August 29, 2019

Facilities staff and contractors have been working hard to advance design and construction projects as well as prepare our buildings and grounds for the return of students. Many improvements and continuing progress are clearly apparent.

With momentum gaining on construction projects, we need to remind everyone in our campus community that SAFETY COMES FIRST.  Please be mindful of barricades, fencing, detours, and instructions communicated on signs and through email announcements. In order to ensure safety for all, we reiterate that only facilities and construction personnel are allowed inside fenced enclosures.

Here are some project updates:

  • Summer 2019 Classroom Refurbishment Projects: Classrooms in several academic buildings received new finishes, paint, furnishings, equipment, technology upgrades and accessibility improvements this summer, including Shahan 201 and 203, Aquinas 108, O’Boyle 220, Pangborn 301, and Crough studios. New carpet, paint, seating, teaching equipment and assisted listening systems were provided for Koubek Auditorium in Crough, Hertzfeld Auditorium in Hannan, and Hannan Lecture Hall.  

  • Residence Hall Improvements: Facilities maintenance and custodial staff have been hard at work over the last few weeks with repairs and deep cleaning in the residence halls. Flather Hall was closed all summer for a complete renovation of its bathrooms. The building re-opened successfully in early August to welcome the Cardinal football team for their pre-season training.

    At the start of the Summer, design began on new residence halls east of Opus Hall.

  • New Dining Commons: The University awarded a construction contract for the new dining facility in January 2019, with completion projected for fall 2021. Activity on site began with the installation of fencing and the start of sitework. Magner Hall is currently being decommissioned and will be demolished in September to make way for the new dining facility.  

    Dining Hall rendering

  • University Walk: The walkway that replaced Pangborn Road and the new entrance gateway from the Metro were in place in time for the May 2019 graduation. New paths to the science buildings on the south side of the walkway were completed this summer as well as the landscape plantings and lighting.

    Entranceway to campus

  • Laboratory Upgrades and Improvements: The Gowan Integrated Learning Lab was completed last Fall. In the Spring, renovations in Pangborn were completed to provide enhanced student project areas and revitalized engineering labs. This Summer, renovation began on the lower level of McCort-Ward that will consolidate two small lab spaces into a fully renovated teaching lab for Chemistry. The renovated lab will be completed in late fall and ready for use in the Spring 2020 semester.

    Students in new engineering lab

  • New Conway School of Nursing: Program development and site investigation for a new building for the Conway School of Nursing has been underway since June.

  • Caldwell Hall: Windows were restored and replaced on historic Caldwell Hall over the summer. The first floor windows were removed, carefully restored off site, and then reinstalled. The upper floors received energy-efficient, double-glazed aluminum windows designed to replicate the historic appearance. The project also includes the replacement of several exterior doors which will finish up in early autumn.

  • Energy Project Phase I: Renovation of the Power Plant is in progress, along with installation of below-grade 4-pipe distribution system to provide hot and chilled water service to all buildings on the south end of campus, from the Power Plant to Caldwell Hall. As this project nears its completion, an area along the east edge of the McMahon Parking Lot in front of Hannan Hall as well as an area between McMahon, Caldwell, and Ward Halls will remain fenced off until mid-September while trenching and surface restoration are completed. 

  • Energy Project Phase II: Phase II will include trenching and installation of hot and chilled water piping to the north end of campus, from Caldwell Hall northward to residence halls, returning to the Power Plant. Preparation for trenching and piping installation has begun. The completion of Phase II work is projected to conclude in Fall 2020 in time to supply heating and cooling to the new dining facility as it reaches completion and to residence halls in time for the 2020-2021 heating season.

  • Fire Safety: The University established a multi-year life safety and fire protection program to protect all campus facilities with fire alarm notification systems and water based fire-sprinkler suppression systems. Residential facilities are complete. Mullen Library was upgraded with an enhanced fire detection system several years ago. The remaining academic and administrative facilities are prioritized by an evaluation of building construction, occupancy, and usage. Design continues for fire alarm and sprinkler systems in Ward, Hartke, Pangborn, McMahon, and O’Boyle halls this year. Implementation is being coordinated with other infrastructure upgrades to mechanical and electrical systems where it is practical