Regents approve additional money for Jones Hall

Kari Petrie

The Board of Regents approved a $700,000 increase in funding for the reconstruction of Jones Hall at a committee meeting Thursday.

The funding will go toward masonry work on the outside of the building.

The work was not included in the initial project proposal in 2002, so the costs were not included, said Kathleen O’Brien, vice president of University Services.

Last summer, the project’s architect discovered the additional work, she said.

“We decided that it was not prudent to renovate interior without stabilizing exterior,” O’Brien said.

The money will come from the previously approved repair and replacement funds, which are part of the University’s annual budget.

Using those monies means other projects will have to wait, she said.

“Given the problems with the exterior walls, it is essential we do this work at this time,” O’Brien said. “It’s not an option.”

The additional funding brings the total renovation costs for Jones Hall to $8.7 million.

The renovation is part of a larger project that includes restoring Nicholson Hall and Folwell Hall for the humanities department.

The new Jones Hall will house the College of Liberal Arts Language Center and the Admissions Welcome Center. The project will be complete next year, O’Brien said.

It’s important for the University to maintain its historic buildings, because their presence is symbolic of the institution’s permanence, she said.

Also, it is expensive to tear down old buildings and rebuild new ones, O’Brien said.

“When we identify a need that’s been missed, we make sure we get the job done right,” she said.