The demolition is starting to wrap up and the construction of the new space is beginning soon. Currently we are working on purchasing all of the materials for the construction process as demolition is taking place. Every detail needs to be thought through and all products need to be ordered. Everything from light fixtures and windows to drywall and screws are on the way to build out the new Student Center.
Though the 6th floor renovation is a separate project from the large renovation, we thought you might want to see the progress. Testing, Evaluation and Research Services, the Office of Military and Veterans Academic Excellence and Hillel will all move into their new spaces in August, just in time to welcome our new students to campus.
Over the past few months the Student Center renovation steering committee has been working with the architects and getting feedback from students regarding furniture selections. Samples were brought in for all the major areas of the Student Center including the ballroom, lounges, meeting rooms and the food court area. The samples were voted on by several hundred students, faculty and staff and the design team went to work with the results. This week all of the hard work concluded with the final furniture and fabric selections.
Since the start of the planning process university staff, architects and our construction team have had over 1,000 meetings to coordinate the Student Center renovation. You may think that is a lot, but there a tons of details that need to be taken care of during the process. For example, this past week there were meetings on digital signage information, lighting fixtures, furniture and fabric selection just to name a few. All this work is being done to make sure that the newly redesigned Student Center is well liked by all its visitors.
Take a walk around the Student Center and you won’t question the fact that demolition is underway. The pounding of hammers, buzzing of saws and humming of drills fill the once quiet study areas as construction crews make way for the new, redesigned Student Center. In order to make space for the new, they first must take out the old. Almost every other day, waste removal services have been hauling away tons of debris and rubble. Much of the debris is sorted at the facilities and recycled when possible. Meanwhile, other crews are in the process of replacing the north end elevators. New steel door faces have been installed on every floor and work has begun on the elevator car!
In 1969, Wayne State Warriors (Tartars back then!) began launching paper airplanes — up three stories and into the Student Center ceiling, where they stuck and have been preserved for decades. Spearheaded by engineering students, this venture turned out to be one the most iconic features of the Student Center. Yet, with the redesign of the Student Center, the airplanes have begun to “take off” to their new homes. Two ceiling tiles full of hanging planes will be landing back in the Student Center and put on display as a tribute to the iconic feature.
The remaining planes have been taken down and will be documented before beginning their final flight into the homes of WSU Alumni this fall.
Check out what happened this week behind the construction walls of the Student Center. The auditorium seats in 289 were removed, the Cue Club is gone and The Grille has no counter to serve chicken tenders.
Several offices moved over the last few weeks and we wanted to share an update about where you can find the services you need.
- Dean of Students Office has moved to Room 786 Student Center
- Hillel of Metro Detroit has moved to the Oakland Center
- Student Veteran Resource Center is running a smaller operation in Room 1600 UGL
- GLBTA Student Union has moved to Room 101 Student Center
- Student Senate and Campus Activities Team have moved to 5260 Anthony Wayne Drive
- Mailroom has moved to Suite 470 in the Student Center
- The Reflection Room been moved to 331 Purdy Library
- The South End has moved to 250 Purdy Library
- Testing, Evaluation, & Research Services has moved to Suite 1900 in A/AB
When it was built in the 60′s, the Student Center had a primary function of being the place to eat on campus. It had a variety of dining spaces, from a restaurant on the 4th floor, catering capabilities on the 2nd floor and full service food court on the 1st floor with some facilities in the lower level. As a result a large amount of square footage on the 1st floor was dedicated to food preparation. Currently these spaces on the 1st floor and spaces on the lower level are rarely used, and largely unknown, by students. These rooms, coolers, back halls and service elevators look as though they could host the next campus haunted house!
However, in the Student Center renovation project, these spaces will be re-purposed to better suit the needs of today’s students. Student Organizations will see new storage spaces and a large back of house kitchen will be built to allow for more national brands to move back into the Student Center.
Phase One of the Student Center construction starts tomorrow May 8th, and the 3rd floor is being closed for a major overhaul. The 3rd floor has been home to the Dean of Students Office, but during the renovation, their space is being redesigned to better serve students and student organizations on campus. In the meantime, the Dean of Students Office has been relocated to the 7th floor of the Student Center with a new campus address of 786 Student Center, 5221 Gullen Mall, Detroit, MI 48202. The Dean of Students Office number has not changed and is 313-577-1010.
DOSO is not the only space getting revamped on the third floor. The current Student Senate and Campus Activities Team space will see major improvements including a new student organization collaboration center. Student organizations will have more flexible space to work together without having to reserve a large meeting space. A new reflection room with ablution stations will also be added in addition to a new meeting room and more lounge space on the third floor!