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Penn State Continuing with East Halls Renovation Project

by on February 26, 2019 2:19 PM

Penn State’s Board of Trustees approved the next phase of East Halls renovations at its meeting Friday, setting the stage for construction to begin on Sproul and Geary Halls.

The East Halls renovation project kicked off after the spring 2016 semester and is scheduled to last through 2022. The renovation addresses the issues brought on by the housing complex’s aging facilities. It uses “self-supported funding,” which includes ongoing increases to room and board rates to support the Housing and Food Services capital plan.

Through the project, each building will introduce climate control and individual private-use bathrooms, which have become the standard on campus for renovated buildings in place of older communal bathrooms. Buildings will also have “knowledge stations” that create collaborative work environments, as well as study spaces, group project rooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms with more (and newer) washers and dryers. Each building will also have a meditation or music practice room with sound-proof walls.

Photo: Shannon Soboslay

Photo: Shannon Soboslay

Photo: Shannon Soboslay

Photo: Shannon Soboslay

Here’s a look at the work that has been done so far, as well as what’s left:

Phase 2A: Sproul, Geary

The most recently approved phase of the project, which will begin in a few months, is expected to cost $60.8 million. Construction on Sproul and Geary Halls will kick off in May. The buildings are expected to re-open for student occupancy in time for the fall 2020 semester.

This renovation will also reconfigure the Findlay Commons loading dock “for enhanced safety” as well as improve emergency vehicle access and ADA accessible pedestrian circulation and landscaping.

Phase 1C: Brumbaugh, Pinchot, Tener

The Board of Trustees approved $84.5 million for renovating Brumbaugh, Pinchot, and Tener Halls, which are currently under construction. The buildings are expected to re-open for student occupancy in time for the fall 2019 semester.

Phase 1B: Pennypacker, McKean, Stuart, Martin

The renovation of Pennypacker, McKean, and Stuart Halls, as well as the construction of new building Martin Hall, cost a total of $106 million. All of these buildings were re-opened for occupancy in time for the fall 2019 semester.

Phase 1A: Earle

The East Halls renovation kicked off with the construction of Earle Hall along Park Ave., with a price tag of $65.1 million. It opened for occupancy for the fall 2017 semester:

Future phases of the renovation project will be announced as the Board of Trustees approves them. These are the buildings that haven’t been touched yet:

  • Bigler Hall
  • Curtin Hall
  • Fisher Hall
  • Hastings Hall
  • Packer Hall
  • Snyder Hall
  • Stone Hall


Elissa Hill is managing editor for Onward State.
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