Allen Hall renovation and expansion wrapping up
An expansion and top-to-bottom renovation of the University of Oregon's Allen Hall is nearly complete, and the building's primary occupant has scheduled a house-warming party.
The UO School of Journalism and Communication will host a grand opening and dedication ceremony at 1 p.m. on Friday, March 1. The event will feature refreshments and the opportunity to tour the new facility with faculty, student, alumni, public officials and SOJC Ambassadors.
The $15 million Allen Hall project has transformed the building – with one of its original wings constructed in 1922, and a second added in 1954 – into a modern, energy-efficient building featuring a sky-lit atrium, an 80-seat lecture hall and a "digital commons" – an open-air, collaborative computer lab.
The new Allen Hall has a three-story, 14,275-foot addition to its southeast corner and a 3,560-foot basement that will house computer servers for campus-wide use. There are also seismic upgrades to the building's existing wings, upgraded heating and air conditioning systems, energy-efficient windows, up-to-date audio and video infrastructure and new furnishings.
The School of Journalism and Communication has been temporarily housed in Agate Hall since project at Allen Hall began about a year and a half ago. Allen Hall will reopen in January.
Eric Allen, the building's namesake, established the UO School of Journalism – the first professional journalism school in the Northwest. The school had about 150 students when Allen Hall got its most recent addition in 1954, and now has more than 1,500.
The renovated building was designed by TBG Architects + Planners and YGH Architecture, and the project's general contractor is Lease Crutcher Lewis.
In 2009, the Oregon legislature approved $7.5 million in general obligation bonds. A $5 million anonymous lead gift and more than 16 major gifts from 75 alumni, friends and employees of the school have contributed to the renovation project.
In early 2011, alumnus Paul Brainerd (1970) contributed $250,000, Julie and Rocky Dixon (1978) contributed $200,000 to name a lecture hall and Greg Giustina contributed $200,000 toward building a central gathering space for students and faculty members. The hearth will be named in honor of Giustina's mother, Lee Barlow Giustina (1943).