By JAY REY
Published December 8, 2023
The Student Union, a vibrant hub of the North Campus, is preparing to get its first major renovation in more than 30 years.
The campus project, set to begin at the end of December, will focus on the stairs and lobby of the Student Union. The goal is to create a more student-friendly experience that gives the feel of a “living room” and enhances the social heart of the North Campus by providing a variety of flexible seating and workspaces for students.
“We are excited to launch phase one of a two-phase construction project later this month that will bring a new sense of excitement and enhanced amenities to our Student Union,” says Brian Hamluk, vice president for student life.
Students travelling through the union this week were met with the installation of temporary walls in preparation for phase one of construction, which will begin Dec. 20. The entire project will last about a year.
The temporary walls will allow for construction to continue while the union remains open and occupied for food, activities and student services.
The project includes removal of the interior vestibule wall; a variety of new seating for students to meet, eat or study; and better access between the second and third floors with the addition of a new, open staircase.
This first phase will include construction of a new vestibule and the third-floor staircase. Work will be done on the ceiling and walls along the building’s south end, where the furniture will be updated.
The second phase is expected to begin in fall 2024. Upgraded furniture will be added on the north end of the union, where work will also be done to the ceiling and walls. The work includes improvements to the building’s acoustics and thermal comfort.
Completion of the project is anticipated in spring of 2025.
“While comprehensive projects like this provide a temporary inconvenience during construction, I’m confident that the results will reflect the university’s investment in a more engaging and community-focused destination for our students and campus community,” Hamluk says.
A project overview and video tour of the planned space can be accessed here.
The original portion of the Student Union was built in 1985, while a major addition was completed in 1992.
This current project was a follow-up to the Student Union Master Plan, which involved architectural and design firms and feedback from students and other campus stakeholders.
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