Monday, June 25, 2012

Construction Project Transforms Phoenix College Campus; Completion Set for December 2012

(PHOENIX, June 25, 2012) – The Phoenix College campus is transforming into a more modern campus with greater amenities for students and employees even as it retains its historical look and legacy as the flagship institution of Maricopa Community Colleges. Phase II of the campus renovation project is in full swing and entire construction project will be completed in December.

Various stages of the project will be completed along with the way. First on the list to be completed will be the West Parking Lot, which will be ready in time for the crush of students attending in the fall semester. The improvements will allow a smoother flow of vehicle and pedestrian traffic and shore up some drainage deficiencies. Drop off points will be better marked and landscaping will provide a more visually attractive parking area.

Next up for completion will be Sophomore Square. The Square makes up the central campus thoroughfare and traditionally has served as a major area for school and club functions as well as a social gathering point for students. The end results will be a more efficient square that fits coherently with the surrounding buildings. It will also be landscaped with mature trees to provide shade and cooling along with other upgrades such as electrical outlets and fiber optic improvements.

Students and others will notice the original PC fountain was dismantled to make way for a more open, pedestrian friendly Sophomore Square. A new zero-edge fountain which incorporates some of the original bricks from the old fountain will be built on the northern part of the Square.

The centerpiece of Phase II will be the new cafeteria, and a glass atrium connecting the old Hannelly Center with the new Enrollment Center, which was completed in January 2012. The plans call for that area to house Counseling, REACH/TRIO, which provides services to first-generation and low-income college students, and the Cafeteria. The latter will feature a wraparound patio that will overlook Sophomore Square and give diners an outdoor seating option.

The glass atrium and a skylight will provide ample natural light into those areas and give the building a bright airy feel, all the way down to the lower level. The atrium area will still leave a small area for outdoor seating and plants, and allow a mural completed by students more than 30 years ago to remain intact.

Finally, the project includes renovating the entrance to the John Paul Theatre, with the goal of allowing it to serve as a bookend to the renovated Sophomore Square. The new entrance will be complimented by a small outdoor theater.

Funding for both improvements came from a 2004 bond election passed by Maricopa County voters.

Direct media inquiries to Jonathan Higuera,, 602.285.7849.

About Phoenix College – PC is a premier institution of higher education that has been serving the community since 1920. As the flagship college of the Maricopa Community Colleges–the largest community college system in America–Phoenix College offers programs for university transfer, career training, and personal development. The 52-acre campus includes state-of-the-art instructional classrooms, a modern library and computer lab, the Eric Fischl Art Gallery, a performing arts theater, a culinary café, a gymnasium and fitness center, and premium athletic fields. Phoenix College students speak more than 50 languages and represent more than 100 countries, reflecting the diverse, multicultural central city that Phoenix College serves.

About D. L. Withers Construction – An Arizona-based contractor, D.L. Withers Construction provides construction manager at risk, design/build, design-bid-build, construction management and tenant improvements services. Founded in 1981, the company builds a broad scope of quality public and private sector projects throughout the southwest, with a primary focus on Arizona.

About RNL – RNL is a global, full-service design firm specializing in sustainable, integrated design. Founded in 1956, RNL offers a continuum of design services, including architecture, interior design, landscape architecture, urban design and planning. RNL has offices in Phoenix, Denver, Los Angeles and Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. For more information, please visit

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