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For $6 million, the Big House could get a fresh paint job

By Peter Shahin, Daily Staff Reporter
Published November 12, 2012

At its monthly meeting on Thursday, the University’s Board of Regents is set to approve a host of renovation projects across campus, ranging from minor structural and maintenance needs to large-scale renovations of iconic campus buildings.

Among upgrades the board will consider is the maintenance of existing structures at Michigan Stadium, the William L. Clements Library, the basement of the College of Pharmacy, the North Campus Research Complex and a tunnel along South University Avenue that serves the Central Campus power plant.

Michigan Stadium, built in 1927, is in need of $6 million in paint and maintenance work, Timothy Slottow, the University’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, wrote in a communication to the regents. He added that enlargements to the stadium in 1948, 1998 and 2010 have weakened and corroded existing steel girders that are now in need of repair or replacement.

However, complicating the project are environmental concerns about the removal of poisonous lead paint, according to Slottow.

“The project will include appropriate lead mitigation methods since much of the existing painted surface contains lead-based paint,” Slottow wrote.

If approved by the board, the project would be completed in summer 2014, Slottow wrote.

Regents to consider large-scale renovation of Earl V. Moore building

The largest renovation the board will discuss will be the Earl V. Moore building on North Campus, totaling an estimated cost of $23.2 million for a complete overhaul of the existing structure.

The Moore building was built in 1964 and currently houses the School of Music, Theatre & Dance. Over the years, the structure has become dilapidated and outdated, inhibiting the performance of the facility and its students. At the University’s annual leadership breakfast on Oct. 29, University President Mary Sue Coleman announced that alumni Bill and Dee Brehm had donated $8 million toward the $23-million project. The University hopes to receive an additional $1 million from smaller alumni donations.

If approved by the board on Thursday, the University will contribute $14 million to complete the renovation.

“I know the faculty from Music, Theatre & Dance will agree when I say this project is overdue,” Coleman said at the leadership breakfast.

In a communication to the board, Slottow wrote that the work would add 21,000 square feet to the building in the form a new lecture hall, rehearsal hall, classrooms, practice rooms and storage space.

Improvements to the quality of existing facilities as well as “architectural, mechanical, and electrical work necessary to accomplish these improvements” are included in the estimated cost.

Slottow wrote that the University will return to the board with a firmer construction schedule once it has received an architectural design from Integrated Design Solutions, the firm selected to carry out the renovation.

In a separate communication, Slottow and Christopher Kendall, the dean of the School of Music, Theatre & Dance, wrote that they would request that the board designate the building’s addition as the Brehm Pavilion in honor of the donors.

Board to vote on updates to North Campus Research Complex

The second-largest ticket item on the renovation schedule is a proposed $17.5-million overhaul of the East Wing of Building 20 of the North Campus Research Complex.