East Quad Residence Hall, long-time home to the Residential College, will be temporarily shutting its doors next year while it undergoes a large-scale construction project.
The renovations are expected to start following the winter 2012 semester, with the residence hall reopening in time for the fall 2013 semester, according to LSA Associate Dean Phil Deloria.
“It’s going to be totally gutted and taken apart, and it’s going to be beautiful when it’s rebuilt,” Deloria said.
During the construction, the RC and the Michigan Community Scholars Program, which will be stationed in East Quad for the second consecutive year, will be moved to a different residence hall. The exact location of the move has yet to be determined, Deloria said.
University Housing spokesman Peter Logan wrote in an e-mail interview that the University’s Board of Regents must approve the construction plans before it begins.
“We have talked about the timing of the project, depending on the scope of the work, but decisions about such major projects have to be reviewed and recommended through the executive leadership of the University and ultimately approved by the regents,” Logan wrote.
The tentative plans have not been officially announced, but some students have been informed of the future renovations.
“For several months, University Housing has been engaged in preliminary studies about upgrading East Quad, including discussions with students and faculty there,” Logan wrote. “It’s a heritage building in need of infrastructure improvements, and we hope that there will be a plan for East Quad.”
According to Deloria, the construction is expected to take one year, which will be possible because of preemptive updates tentatively scheduled for May 2011. These include asbestos remediation and other projects, which will allow the more extensive renovations to take only about a year, he said.
Some students have expressed dismay at MCSP’s location in East Quad next year since the program was originally scheduled to relocate to Couzens Hall. However, Deloria said the East Quad renovations will create space for community service programs on campus including the RC, the MCSP and the Ginsberg Center, which is located across the street from East Quad.
“There’s a lot of synergy possible there,” Deloria said.
Many of the discussions between University Housing officials and the architects working on the project revolved around who would be housed in East Quad following the renovations.
“Once we had decided that we were going to do a co-location (of the MCSP and RC) and look for some synergies between these programs, then it seemed to make sense to us to keep the programs together,” Deloria said.
LSA freshman JuHee Lee, who is in the RC, said she doesn’t see how the two communities interact and how they will be related in the future.
Also in the RC, LSA sophomore Tim Hall said he hasn’t noticed MCSP collaborating with anything in the RC. He added that he is concerned about the two programs being in the same space indefinitely.
“I think they deserve their own building,” Hall said.