More construction projects underway

by Robert Koch

The University Law School will soon have a new face and Middlebrook Hall up to 200 additional beds, according to plans outlined before the University Board of Regents on May 11.
Eric Kruse, University services vice president, presented the regents with proposed design and budget plans for the construction projects scheduled to begin this year.
Law School addition finally realized
With a reshaped, three-story facade extending northward, the expanded Law School building will be remodeled following 1978 design plans.
“We’re redesigning the building to accommodate how law is and will be taught in the 21st century,” said Law School Dean E. Thomas Sullivan.
Totalling 43,100 square feet, the project will make room for expanded computer facilities, seminar rooms, a rare books collection, student organizations, and more than 100 adjunct faculty members.
Private sources are funding the $9.3 million project with former Minnesota Attorney General Warren Spannaus and Supervalu CEO Michael Wright leading the fund-raising drive. Both men are Law School alumni.
So far, well over half of the money has been raised, Sullivan said.
Minneapolis-based Ryan Companies will build the addition, following plans drafted by the Leonard Parker Associates, architects of the existing building. Crews are expected to break ground June 7.
Terry Margo, Facilities Management owner’s representative, said the addition will probably be complete by June 2001.
“We’re pushing to get this thing done as soon as possible to save money for the Law School,” Margo said.
The addition is only part of Campaign Minnesota, a $1.3 billion campaign funding the school’s vision for the 21st century.
Dorm rooms: how suite it is
A tower rising five to seven stories above the dining and commons area of Middlebrook Hall will add 150 to 200 beds to the West Bank dormitory.
“It’s helping to meet the demand for student housing,” said Mary Ann Ryan, director of Housing and Residential Life. “It will be a great facility.”
Built in 1969, Middlebrook Hall currently accommodates up to 734 students in its four-winged, 12-story tower.
The $10 million addition will feature suite-style living, with two-room units sharing a central bathroom.
The new housing unit will also feature a University Police substation, convenience store, and 80 additional seats in the dining hall, which will double as an Internet study area, Ryan said.
Priscilla Meckley, assistant director for Facilities Management design and construction services, said the University has issued requests for proposals explaining to potential contractors the size, character and scope of the project. The proposals are due May 30.
Construction is scheduled to begin Aug. 15 and students are expected to move in by fall 2001.

Robert Koch covers police and courts and welcomes comments at [email protected]