One of the most high-profile projects on campus, the remodel of West Union is a three-year endeavor that will total nearly $100 million. The renovations are intended to transform the building—originally constructed in 1931—into the center of campus life, with a wide variety of dining options and spaces for student interaction. The project includes converting the space under the Bryan Center Plaza into an outdoor seating area, which has led to the closure of the plaza between Kilgo Quad and the Flowers Building. Funded largely by the Duke Endowment, the project is expected to wrap up in Spring 2016
Perkins and Rubenstein Libraries
The work currently being done to the two libraries marks the final stage of the Perkins Project, a comprehensive renovation that began in 2000. Focusing on the building’s original structure—built in 1930—along with a wing added in 1948, the construction will give Perkins a new entrance and remodel the space housing the Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library. Set to be completed in Summer 2015, the project requires the closure of the library’s main entrance. While the library’s foundation is being waterproofed, the construction has also led to the shutdown of Chapel Drive from the West Campus Bus Stop to the steps of the Chapel—a set-up that will be in place until November 2014.
The first floor of Bostock Library, built in 2005, is currently closed to allow for renovations that will transform the space into a “Research Commons”—a 14,000 square foot facility with workspaces and tools specifically designed for collaborative learning and digital education. The bulk of the project is being done throughout summer 2014, and the space is set to debut in November
After a portion of West Duke’s ceiling unexpectedly collapsed in February, the building was closed to allow repair work to be done. The collapse was attributed to a combination of the building’s aging and structural changes that had compromised the plaster ceilings—no one was harmed by the ceiling, though several offices and classrooms were displaced. Built in 1912, West Duke is one of the oldest structures on East Campus and the renovations will replace the roof and sprinkler system, along with adding an elevator. The project is expected to be finished before the start of the school year.
Water Reclamation Project
Work began on this manmade storm water reuse pond in January 2013. Located at the corner of Erwin Road and Towerview Drive, the pond will be large enough to cut Duke’s dependence on water from the city of Durham by 20 percent. The area around the pond—totaling nearly six acres—is designed to be open to the community, with bike paths and an amphitheatre. Additionally, the cooled water will help to provide air conditioning to several facilities on campus. The project is scheduled to be completed by Spring 2015 and will cost approximately $9 million—over two thirds of which will be used in the creation of the pond itself.
Campus Drive Pipe Installation
For the second consecutive summer, construction crews are working along Campus Drive to install pipes going from West Campus to East Campus. Intended to help cool buildings on East Campus—a number of which do not have central air conditioning—the project began during the 2012 Winter Break and picked back up in the summer of 2013. Portions of the road have been closed this summer to facilitate the continuation of the work, and Duke's busses have been placed on alternate routes.
Still to Come
Built in 1930, the West Campus auditorium is the largest venue on campus other than the Chapel. It will be closed for the 2014-2015 academic year to receive $5 million in long-awaited cosmetic updates—including new lighting, refurbished seating and a new entryway.
In 2012, the University learned that the roof of the Chapel—built in the 1930s—was not stable, and so Duke’s most iconic space will be out of commission for a year beginning in May 2015. Initially, repairs were to take place without the need for a closure, but they were found to be more extensive than originally believed. The repairs will include a full replacement of the exterior roof and a rehabilitation of the interior ceiling, with a projected price tag of approximately $10 million.
Wallace Wade Stadium
Following the 2014 Blue Devil football season, Wallace Wade Stadium will close for renovations. The construction will commence with the removal of the track that currently surrounds the field and will increase the number of seats for spectators. The improvements to the 85-year-old facility will cost approximately $15 million.
Health and Wellness Center
In March 2015, work is set to begin on a new Health and Wellness Center. The 70,000 square-foot space will unite student health, Counseling and Psychological Services, the Wellness Center and the case management office under one roof—facilities which are currently scattered across campus. Located on Towerview Road near the Penn Pavilion, the Center is expected to cost $30 million and open in late 2016 or early 2017.
Currently housing a dining hall while West Union is closed for renovations, the Pavilion opened in Fall 2013 after a year of construction that totaled just more than $20 million. When West Union opens in 2016, the Pavilion will begin serving in its intended role as special event space.
The new home of the Nicholas School opened in April 2014, after two years of work that cost $35 million. Adjacent to the Levine Science Research Center, the building features 70,000 square feet of classroom and research space.
The East Campus auditorium reopened in Fall 2013 after two years and $15 million of renovations. With a new interior that includes vastly improved acoustics, the remodeled venue was the subject of much praise in its first year.