While many Duke students have been off campus during the summer, the incessant hum of on-campus construction hasn't taken a break.
With multiple construction projects slated for completion in the next two years, workers have been taking advantage of the reduced traffic on campus during the summer to make progress on the buildings. All of the projects currently remain on schedule.
The “superdorm” of East Campus is the nearest to completion of Duke's three current dorm projects.
Joe Gonzalez, interim assistant vice president of student affairs and dean for residential life, noted that work over the summer has focused on both the exterior and interior of the building. On the outside, workers have been putting the iconic red bricks of East Campus into the skeleton of the building. Interior work has included the installation of drywall and flooring.
“Most of the major construction for that project has been completed, and now we’re on to the final phase of that project,” Gonzalez said.
After the remaining work—most of which is interior construction—is finished in January 2018, the dorm will then open to house students returning to campus from abroad or elsewhere for the Spring 2018 semester.
The new dorm complex coming to West Campus, named The Hollows, is part of the University’s plan to phase out Central Campus residences.
Gonzalez explained that most of the work done this summer on The Hollows was laying the ground for construction of the actual buildings.
“A lot of progress has been made, but it’s basically been infrastructure, utility setup—so a lot of digging—and work of that nature,” he explained.
Towerview Road was closed for most of the summer due to the utility work being done for The Hollows. Gonzalez said he expected that preparation work would “continue throughout the fall” and that the dorm would be completed around July 2019, with students being able to move in for the Fall 2019 semester.
Gonzalez noted that the work to date has primarily been demolition and has focused on “removing elements that need to be removed so that new work can be done.” Lower levels of the buildings were cleared out to make room for the new central air conditioning system and create pathways for the air ducts.
The renovations are slated to wrap up in July 2018, meaning that students will be able to occupy the dorms for the Fall 2018 semester.
Wallace Wade upgrade
The recent upgrades to Wallace Wade Stadium will make football games increasingly accessible to fans—and just in time for the upcoming season.
A sidewalk running from the Science Drive parking garage to Wallace Wade Stadium has been constructed, noted project manager Floyd Williams. Additional pathways to the track and lacrosse/soccer field have also been added.
The East Gate of Wallace Wade is now home to new restrooms and a concessions building, while a new guest services building is under construction at the North Gate. These buildings are slated for completion by September 2, when the Blue Devils take on North Carolina Central University.
Additionally, accessible seating will be available at the top row of the stadium.
Rubenstein Arts Center
The new arts building on Campus Drive is also sticking to its schedule. Project Manager Ray Walker explained in an email that the trellis, dance floors and landscaping for it were completed over the summer.
Although the construction of the building will likely be finished by October 2017, the building will not open for students until the Spring 2018 semester, he added.
“The completion date reflects when the building is ready to be moved in to, and in this case it will take several months to move in due to the high-tech equipment that needs to be installed and calibrated,” Walker wrote. “This includes the theater and dance studio lighting, the projectors for the film screening room and also WXDU.”
Karsh Alumni and Visitors Center
Groundwork for the new Karsh Alumni and Visitors Center is being laid. Construction on the building complex is still in its preliminary phase, Project Manager Sally Curtis noted. Over the summer, workers installed utilities and prepared the land for erosion control.
“The foundation is to start in the fall and students should start to see a building rise out of the ground this winter,” she wrote in an email.