For the past year or so, there’s been a giant mess-o-metal on Andrus Field where the old alumni atheletic building used to be. This will eventually become the Suzanne Lemberg Usdan University Center, a.k.a. Campus Center on crack.
The University Center will consolidate dining facilities for students and faculty, and will provide seminar and meeting spaces. It will house the WSA, the post office, and will offer retail space. Facilities for formal and informal gatherings and events will complement those available in the Memorial Chapel and ’92 Theater. A south-facing plaza and second story terrace will overlook Andrus Field and will provide an outdoor venue.
It’ll be three floors of triangle-shaped crazy. The WSA finally gets to move out of its little shack on High Street, campus dining will be localized into more or less one spot (this includes the freshman cafeteria!), and there seems to be a nifty spiral staircase in the middle of the thing. No one’s really sure what “retail space” means, though.
The campus center is slated to be completed Fall 2007.
What’ll happen to existing campus buildings? As it stands, Mocon will be torn down, though some alumni are pushing to get it converted into a venue for student events. There is talk of turning Davenport back into a Physics building (which it was in the past).
Fayerweather, the big castle-like building, will also be undergoing a rehaul. It’s going to be reincarnated as a theatre/dance hall/ballroom. I’m not shitting you, the blueprints actually say “ballroom”. It’s about fucking time.
The Squash Courts will eventually become a museum that will bring together the random historical artifacts currently scattered across campus: Specifically, works on paper and other objects at the Davison Art Center, Asian objects at the Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies, archaeological and ethnographic materials housed in the Exley Science Center, and world musical instruments in the Music Department. Rumor is that the fabled Wesleyan mummy will also find a home in the museum, as well as the stuffed buffalo (Stuffalo!) that currently lives in the science tower.
For official details on the new campus center and updates, click here to see the University master planning site.
There’s also a live webcam overlooking Andrus Field that’s monitering progress from the roof of Olin.