By Bob Romantic
GCU News Bureau
There’s never an “off” season when it comes to construction projects at Grand Canyon University. But the start of summer means even more activity on campus as the rapidly expanding University gears up for a fall semester in which ground enrollment is expected to increase by 30 percent to 8,500 students.
Four major construction projects will be completed this summer, a fifth begins in July and plans are in the works for several other projects that include a new administration building and possible expansion of GCU Arena.
Here’s a breakdown of what’s happening:
- Construction of the two new five-story residence halls, Chaparral and Saguaro, is ahead of schedule and both are expected to be ready for the start of fall classes. Chaparral is 80 percent complete, with carpeting on the first four floors scheduled to be installed next week (trim work is being finished up on the
fifth floor). At Saguaro, which is 60 percent complete, the framework is finished and work on the stucco and roofing has begun. A new swimming pool and rec center will be part of the new residence halls, as detailed in this story.
- Masonry at the four-story Student Union expansion is nearly complete and steel work begins today. The Union, which will be as tall as the College of Arts and Sciences Building, will be the new home of the library on the third and fourth floors (detailed in this story), a Starbucks and lounge area on the second floor, and an expanded dining area on the bottom floor.
- Painting has begun at the 27th Avenue offices, which should be complete by the end of July. A 120-person, platform-tiered lecture hall similar to those found in North Gym will be added to other amenities such as a fitness center, exercise room, coffee bars and self-serve convenience store that were detailed here. Employees located in the Annex I area west of campus will be moved temporarily to the College of Education building until the 27th Avenue offices are complete.
- Construction of a new 33,700-square-foot classroom building just north of the College of Arts and Sciences building will begin in July. The new building will be located on the grassy area between the Promenade and the bookstore and will be roughly half the size of the CAS. Bob Machen, senior vice president for campus development, said it should be ready by January 2014.
Once the library is relocated to the Student Union, Machen said the current Fleming library building near the Promenade entrance is being looked at as a site for a new administration building.
Contact Bob Romantic at 639.7611 or [email protected].