Friday, January 14, 2011

Center of Historic PC Campus to Receive Upgrade

The center of the historic Phoenix College campus is about to receive a spectacular upgrade that will positively impact students’ college experience. Phoenix College has embarked on a project to renovate and expand Hannelly Center, built in 1966, and renovate the college’s LC Building, an art deco building constructed as part of the W.P.A. in 1938. In addition to the cosmetic benefits and the flexibility provided by new gathering spaces, the finished project will result in a new way to efficiently serve students without the need for them to visit various service areas all over campus. In tandem with these much needed improvements will be the holistic redesign of Sophomore Square into a center campus masterpiece of lush student space.

The 44-year-old Hannelly Center, a fine example of mid-century modern design, currently houses the cafeteria, student life and leadership, the bookstore, financial aid, and the counseling department. The renovation will provide room for an exciting development: a new One-Stop Enrollment Center where students will be served in four carefully-planned zones. Within one central area, students will be able to do everything from getting their student ID to completing their educational plan with an advisor’s guidance. Lines will be eliminated through the use of a high-tech queuing system, which will send a text message to students five minutes before their turn comes up, creating an enrollment process that is efficient, personal, and accommodating.

“All processes and space requirements are being approached with a ‘what is best for students?’ philosophy,” said Dan Herbst, Dean of Students. “In planning this, we are not looking at what has been done in education for the past 50 years, but what we expect to be doing for the next 25 years,” he said.

The Hannelly Center expansion and renovation also will provide a more visible and dramatic entrance to the campus, which is located at 15th Avenue and Thomas. The facility will house areas designed to promote social interaction, including multi-purpose space, study areas, and club and meeting spaces for students, staff, and community members.

Students will undoubtedly be enthusiastic about another facet of the project – the renovation of the 10,000 square foot LC Building into a new Student Union, complete with a spacious lounge area and a game room.

“We are thrilled about the progress being made on the actualization of our One Stop Enrollment Center in the remodeled and expanded Hannelly Center and the remodel of the LC Building into a Student Union,” said Phoenix College president Dr. Anna Solley. “These two world-class facilities will serve to further enhance the outstanding learning and gathering spaces that characterize the historic Phoenix College Campus, while providing a state-of-the-art customer service environment for our students.”

A re-design of Sophomore Square will be included as part of the project, with new shade structures, trees, and more flexible spaces for gatherings and events.

“We will be bringing in more of the green palette that everyone loves about PC – trees, flowers, plants – and making it even better,” said Doug McCarthy, Director of College Facilities Planning & Development.

Energy savings are a priority area and are being looked at throughout every step of the project. The resulting high performance buildings will include water-saving plumbing devices, solar panels, natural lighting, a day-lighting system, building automation controls, and more.

The entire project, which is made possible through General Obligation Bond Funds approved by the voters in 2004 for the Maricopa Community Colleges, is slated for completion by December 2012.The project is being designed by RNL Design and local firm D.L. Withers Construction will serve as the general contractor.

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