After 52 years, Eddy Hall has gotten a much-needed facelift.
The Eddy Hall revitalization project is finally nearing its end after over a year of construction. The building houses the English, philosophy and ethnic studies departments, and is frequently used by thousands of Colorado State University students.
Since the flood of 1997, several attempts have been made to repair damage to the building’s structure, according to Bruce Ronda, associate dean for the College of Liberal Arts and professor in the English department. However, it became apparent that Eddy was overdue for a complete renovation.
According to Ronda, the most striking upgrade was a 3,500 square foot extension on the east side of the building. This created larger classroom spaces on the first and second floors, and a more open, welcoming entrance to alleviate congestion in the busy building. The $12 million project increased the size of the building to 74,000 square feet.
“It added a new feature to the spine of campus,” said Tony Flores, CSU Facilities Project manager.
A $7 million bond issue was approved in 2012 for upgrades to mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems, safety and American Disabilities Act upgrades and interior remodels. An additional $4.8 million bond issue was put toward the new stone exteriors, window replacements, a new plaza and entrance and other interior updates.
“A lot of things are behind the scenes that a lot of people won’t notice,” Flores said.
Other improvements include updated flooring and paint throughout the building, renovated classrooms, restrooms and offices, air conditioning installation and new lounge areas called “Eddy’s eddies,” according to Flores. The University Writing Center, the Jann Benson Ethics Center, the Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research and the Eddy Philosophy Library will be located in the updated Eddy Hall.
“I’m looking forward to a more accessible, navigable and lively building for the 21st century,” Ronda said.
While the construction project has been moving forward smoothly, Eddy Hall has been a constant source of confusion and frustration for many students and faculty during its renovation.
Originally, construction was supposed to happen in phases, allowing some departments to remain in the building while others moved to the Behavioral Sciences Building, Johnson Hall, and Ingersoll Hall. When it became clear that this phasing plan would not work, members of the English and philosophy departments who were still in the building were suddenly relocated to Ingersoll Hall.
Junior English major Madison Myers had many of her classes moved around campus while Eddy was out of service.
“I’ve had to go to buildings all over campus, mostly Clark, but some over on the Oval and other random places,” Myers said. “It’s been kind of inconvenient.”
Once the building was completely vacated, the project was able to advance more quickly, according to Ronda.
“I know that the transition of offices and centers to Ingersoll, BSB and Johnson Hall was difficult at times, and I appreciate the patience that most people showed during those months,” Ronda said. “But I also know that the result in a much-improved and comfortable building will be worth the wait and inconvenience.”
Eddy Hall is open for classes during the summer session, and is being used extensively for Ram Orientation. A grand opening will be held in August prior to the beginning of fall classes.
“I am looking forward to having my classes in one location,” Myers said.
Flores said they should be wrapping up the project soon, adding furniture and landscaping before school starts in the fall. After a few minor adjustments this summer, Eddy Hall will be completed and ready to face the rush of students.
“Every construction project requires fine tuning, especially one like this that combines new construction and existing structure,” Ronda said. “So we’ll be touching up paint, signage, ceiling tiles and other items throughout the summer to get ready for the grand opening in August.”
Collegian Senior Reporter Emily Vavra can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @vivalavavra.