Cranes and hard hats dot campus as new buildings shape the future

Knight Campus construction

Cranes, trucks and hard-hat-wearing workers have become a familiar sight around campus in recent months.

The UO has no fewer than six active construction projects going on, with more in the works. Together, they are transforming campus in ways big and small.

Most notable are the Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact on Franklin Boulevard and the rebuild of Hayward Field. But other projects are underway that also promise to have a direct effect on student life, from new and renovated residence halls to an expanded health center to a new Black Cultural Center.

Here’s a look at the new facilities that are set to open in the 2019-20 academic year and beyond:

The Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact

The Knight Campus is a $1 billion initiative aimed at integrating research, training and entrepreneurship into a single, nimble, interdisciplinary enterprise.

Construction is underway on the $225 million, 160,000-square-foot first phase, with researchers and students scheduled to move in spring of 2020. Work started this spring on a pedestrian sky bridge over Franklin Boulevard, connecting existing UO science facilities with the home of the Knight Campus.

Made possible by a $500 million lead gift from Penny and Phil Knight and augmented with additional private gifts and $70 million in state funds, the Knight Campus vision blends cutting-edge science — in areas such as bioengineering, biomaterials, technologies for precision medicine, prediction of complex biological systems and synthetic biology — with an entrepreneurial drive to produce products, processes and tools that address major challenges.

Hayward Field

Oregon’s storied track and field venue is undergoing a complete reconstruction and is set to open in spring 2020. The state-of-the-art stadium will set the standard for venues in the sport and incorporate laboratories and research facilities designed to push the limits of human potential.

Designed as a visual tribute to the natural wonders of Oregon, Hayward will hold more than 12,000 fans and be expandable to nearly 30,000 for showcase events such as the IAAF World Outdoor Championships, which are coming to the UO in 2021.

The venue is designed to be a theater for track and field, with unobstructed sight lines, great acoustics and a new nine-lane track, while maintaining the intimate feel of the old stadium. Both professionals and student-athletes will enjoy state-of-the-art locker rooms, practice spaces and athletic medicine rooms. Students and researchers in the Department of Human Physiology will make groundbreaking discoveries in new laboratory and classroom spaces.

The project, which will benefit student-athletes for decades to come, is fully funded by gifts from Penny and Phil Knight and more than 50 other donors.

Willie and Donald Tykeson Hall

Student success is a priority at the UO, and Tykeson Hall is being built to house the University Career Center, the administrative offices of the College of Arts and Sciences and the Division of Equity and Inclusion. Tykeson Hall will be a resource to help students navigate the undergraduate experience, discover their academic passion and explore career opportunities that align with their talents and interests.

Construction on the 63,000-square-foot, five-story building began in December 2017. The building will be substantially completed by the end of June, and people should be able to move in around Aug. 19, said project manager Martina Oxoby.

About half of the funding for the $42.5 million project came from private donors, including a lead gift of $10 million from the Tykesons in 2014, with the other half coming from state bonds.

The Black Cultural Center

Students spoke out, university leaders listened and donors stepped up. The Black Cultural Center, located off East 15th Avenue and Villard Alley east of the Global Scholars Hall, is designed as a home base for academic and social activities of black students and a place where other students and visitors can learn about the black student experience at the UO.

The 3,200-square-foot center will accommodate an array of activities including student meetings, study sessions, academic support and even small classes. The facility also will feature exhibits and programs to serve as a portal on black heritage and culture for all members of the diverse campus community.

Construction began winter term on the timber-framed structure and should be complete by the end of August, Oxoby said. The $3 million project is funded entirely by donors, including Nancy and Dave Petrone, who gave a lead gift of $1 million.

UO Health and Counseling Center

Renovations to the University Health and Counseling Center, built in 1966, will add about 22,000 square feet to the existing building through a three-story expansion to the north facade, as well as the renovation of 11,000 square feet of existing space. New features include an acute care clinic, additional clinical counseling offices and an expanded reception and waiting area.

The addition should be completed in September and the entire $18.8 million project by the end of 2019, said project manager Colin Brennan.

The project addresses a shortage of clinical space and a demand for health services that exceeds the capacity of the original building, as well as a backlog of deferred maintenance.

A residence hall renaissance

Some of the oldest residence halls on campus are getting a makeover, and in some cases, a complete re-do.

The Bean Complex, built in 1963, is nearing the end of a complete makeover that began in June 2017 with renovation of the west wing. The second phase of the $48 million project, renovation of the east wing, began in June 2018 and should be substantially completed by July 1 and be furnished and ready for fall term, said project manager George Bleekman.

The 720-bed complex was completely gutted, and the elimination of walls that isolated different sections of the building will provide opportunities for residents to build community, he said. The building received seismic upgrades, all-new mechanical systems and upgraded rooms. It also features a new centralized entry off East 15th Avenue that leads to the centrally located Academic Learning Core.

Meanwhile, the Walton and Hamilton residence halls are set to be demolished and rebuilt in two phases, starting this fall. A total of 1,800 beds will be added across 515,000 square feet. Like Bean, the two halls were built in the early 1960s and are functionally worn out and require costly maintenance, Bleekman said.

Construction on the Hamilton Hall replacement will begin around late October on the green space known as Humpy Lumpy Lawn at East 15th Avenue and Agate Street. The new building will include a dining hall and a housing recruitment center when substantially completed in late spring 2021, Bleekman said.

Once the new Hamilton is complete, Walton Hall will be demolished and rebuilt at its current location at 15th and Agate. That project is expected to take about two years with completion in spring 2023. Once the new Walton Hall is completed, the old Hamilton Hall will be torn down and be converted into green space and a future building site.

Together, the two new halls are expected to cost $217 million and will create an additional 400 beds, mostly for upper-division students.

A new classroom and office building

Collier House is one of the oldest and most prominent buildings at the UO, located in the heart of campus between Johnson Hall and the Erb Memorial Union.

Campus planning calls for the Italianate-style structure to be moved to Gerlinger Green to make way for a new classroom and office building in its spot at East 13th Avenue and University Street.

However, the timing of the move and construction of the new building is uncertain. Campus planners are currently in the schematic design phase of the 61,000-square-foot building, and once that is complete around the start of summer the project will be put on pause to open a window for fundraising, said project manager Gene Mowery.

The project won’t move forward until the UO has raised the necessary funds. The cost of the new building is estimated at $56.7 million, which includes the cost of moving Collier House, he said.

Built in 1886 as a private residence by physics professor George Haskell Collier, it has served as the president’s residence and faculty club and is now used for faculty offices, classrooms and small music recitals.

By Tim Christie, University Communications