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In Review

CAMPUS UPDATESWork Aims to Reshape Campus Spots Wegmans Hall, a student center, and library renovations will bring a new look to prominent parts of the River Campus.
quad-campus (Map: Michael Osadciw)

Some prominent spots on the River Campus are expected to soon have a more vibrant and engaging feel to them. Several construction and renovation projects got under way this fall, including construction of Wegmans Hall, a new academic building that will be home to the Goergen Institute for Data Science, and a major overhaul of the Frederick Douglass Building to transform the 60-year-old facility into a new student center.

Work began this year on Wegmans Hall, named in recognition of leadership support for the project from the Wegman Family Foundation. The 58,000-square-foot, four-story building is expected to be dedicated in late 2016 and fully occupied early in 2017.

In 2014 Danny Wegman, chair-elect of the University’s Board of Trustees and the president of his family’s foundation and chairman of its board, announced a $10 million commitment for the building. In 2015, Robert Goergen ’60, chair emeritus, and his wife, Pamela, the namesakes for the Goergen Institute, committed $11 million for the project.

The new building is part of a new four-acre Science and Engineering Quadrangle formed with Goergen Hall, Hylan Hall, Hutchison Hall, and the Computer Studies Building. A landscaping plan by the Boston-based firm Carol R. Johnson Associates Landscape Architects is intended to make the quadrangle a more community- friendly area, including the creation of more green space and allowing the quadrangle to house tents and seating for University events such as Meliora Weekend, Commencement Weekend, student club activities, concerts, and food trucks.

The final design is scheduled to be in place by December, with landscape construction set to begin in April 2016. The new quadrangle is expected to be ready by next fall.

Renovations are also under way to make Douglass a new student center, housing a newly updated dining facility, the Paul J. Burgett Intercultural Center, and a new Language Center. The building will also feature redesigned student gathering spaces and links to other student areas on the River Campus.

Opened in the 1950s, the building originally served as the men’s dining center when the colleges for men and women were merged. Most recently, it was home to the University bookstore, which moved to College Town last spring.

Plans for the bookstore’s move prompted discussion among students, student life administrators in the College, and others on the River Campus about how the building could be transformed. Renovations are expected to be completed in time for the building to reopen in fall 2016.

Plans to renovate several areas of the River Campus Libraries have also begun. At Rush Rhees Library, plans are under way for the Barbara J. Burger iZone at the River Campus Libraries, a new space where students can gather to explore social, cultural, community, and economic ideas. The space is named in recognition of support from University Trustee Barbara Burger ’83.

At Carlson Library, plans call for a new collaborative area that supports and showcases work in all phases of research.