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Renovation of the University Center Progresses in Spite of Weather Challenges

Ferris State UniversityRenovation of the University Center was about 33 percent completed, in late February, according to Michael Hughes, Ferris State University’s associate vice president of Physical Plant.

“The University Center project is going well,” he said. “But, we have experienced some delays due to the unusually harsh winter that we have experienced.”

The harsh winter weather has delayed the University Center project a few weeks. Still, Hughes believes that the date of substantial completion remains December 2014. Physical Plant staff believe that the lost time can be made up. The University Center remains on track to be opened by January 2015.

The $33.9 million project focuses on renovation of the former Rankin Student Center, a facility that was initially built in 1957. Changes to the facility occurred in 1960 and 1987. The current renovation is designed to advance the university’s desire to have a more community-focused facility. Once completed, the University Center will serve as a gathering place for the campus community, including commuter students. As part of the renovation, Carlisle and Masselink residence halls were demolished as a staging area for project contractors and eventually to create additional parking.

The University Center renovation project includes floor plan reconfigurations and some new space; the upgrade of building envelope and interior finishes as well as replacement of equipment, fixtures and furniture. Plumbing, electrical and mechanical systems will be upgraded with energy efficient systems that will meet the programmatic requirements and reduce operational and maintenance costs.