After two months of classes and a full slate of activities, it became official on Friday: The new Allen Hall is open.
Allen Hall – home to the UO's School of Journalism and Communication – got its grand opening on what was the warmest day of 2013, to date. Ribbon was cut and guests were guided through the renovated and expanded building by student ambassadors from the SOJC.
Dignitaries and speakers included UO President Michael Gottfredson, journalism school Dean Tim Gleason, master of ceremonies and Starbucks Chief Communications Officer Corey duBrowa – an SOJC alum – and The Duck.
Faculty moved into the transformed Allen Hall – which pulls together wings of the building that were built in 1922 and 1954 – in late January, and students returned to the building for the start of winter term. Classes were held in Agate Hall during the $15 million Allen Hall construction project.
The three-story transformation added 18,000 square feet to the building, which serves more than 2,000 students. In 1954, when the last major addition was completed, the building served 300 journalism majors.
Private gifts, including a $5 million anonymous lead gift and more than 80 contributions ranging from $10 to $300,000, covered half the renovation costs. State general obligation bonds authorized by the 2009 Oregon Legislature funded the rest.
The building’s sustainable design is equivalent to LEED silver, and despite a 40 percent increase in space, the building’s energy use is net neutral and 26 percent more efficient than required by Oregon’s energy code.