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November 21, 2008

Trustees OK Wang Hall architect, master plans for two campuses

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Purdue University board of trustees on Friday (Nov. 21) approved hiring an architect to plan Seng-Liang Wang Hall, the College of Engineering's new electrical and computer engineering building in Discovery Park.

The board also approved campus master plans for Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne and Purdue North Central.

On Thursday (Nov. 20), the board's Physical Facilities Committee approved construction plans for the $99.5 million Mackey Arena renovation and addition. The committee also approved construction contracts for the renovation of Hillenbrand Residence Hall's dining court and the basement and third floor of the Krannert Building.

BSA LifeStructures of Indianapolis will lead the design process for Wang Hall, which is scheduled to begin in early December and take approximately one year. The university expects to advertise for bids in January 2010, and construction could begin sometime in March of 2010.

The 38,500-square-foot, $18 million Wang Hall is named after the father of Purdue alumnus Patrick Wang, chairman and chief executive officer of Johnson Electric in Hong Kong. Patrick Wang and his wife, Lucy, gave $5 million in 2003 for the new building in honor of his father. The School of Electrical and Computer Engineering will expand into the new facility and will continue to occupy most of the current Electrical Engineering Building and the Materials and Electrical Engineering Building.

The recommendations in the Purdue North Central campus master plan include creating village clusters within walking distance of one another, establishing a continuous open-space system, creating a campus gateway and mall, and placing the new Student Services and Activities Complex in the southern portion of campus, adjacent to recreation fields.

The key recommendations in the IPFW campus master plan include embracing the river in future campus projects, simplifying vehicular and pedestrian movement throughout campus, developing new buildings in the academic core, and moving the center of campus activities to the north.

The Physical Facilities Committee heard an update on the Mackey complex renovation plans that will include additional meeting, office and study space and also will relocate football practice fields and parking areas.

The athletics department, which is self-supporting and receives no state or university funds, will pay for the project completely with gifts, concession and premium seating revenue, and income generated from the Big Ten Network and other conference television funds.

The committee also approved a $1,521,900 construction contract with J.R. Kelley Co. of Lafayette for the renovation of the Hillenbrand Residence Hall dining court and a $1,068,000 contract with Kettelhut Construction of Lafayette for the renovation of the basement and third floor of the Krannert Building.

"This project will upgrade the Hillenbrand dining services to provide a dining experience that complements those found in the recently completed campus dining courts," said John Sautter, vice president for housing and food services.

The work will focus on improving customer traffic flow at the entrance and serving areas, upgrading food stations, changing the aesthetics of the dining rooms, and adding public restrooms.

The Hillenbrand dining court will close at the end of the fall semester. Work will begin on Jan. 19 and is scheduled to be completed in the summer.

The west half of the Krannert Building's third floor, which houses the Krannert School of Management, is being remodeled to provide enhanced student service areas for the management school's undergraduate programs. The offices are currently in the building's basement.

"Due to age and location, the current area does not compare favorably with our peer schools and does not meet the expectations of students considering or enrolled in our highly rated undergraduate program," said Richard A. Cosier, Krannert School dean and Leeds Professor of Management.

"This project will allow the Krannert School to enhance its career counseling, recruiting and advising services immeasurably. The vacated basement space will be renovated to provide graduate student offices and study areas, and enhanced space for undergraduate student organizations."

The renovation is scheduled to begin in early December. The plan calls for the third-floor work to be completed in late May, at which time basement occupants will be moved to the third floor. The basement portion of the work is scheduled to begin in June and be completed in September.

Writer: Greg McClure, (765) 494-9394,

Sources: Robert McMains, vice president for physical facilities, (765) 494-8000,

Richard A. Cosier, (765) 494-4366,

John Collier, Office of University Architect, (765) 494-6882,

John Sautter, (765) 463-2869,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

Note to Journalists: Copies of the Purdue North Central master plan can be obtained by contacting William Back, vice chancellor for administration at For copies of the Indiana-Purdue University Fort Wayne master plan, contact Walter Branson, vice chancellor of financial affairs, at (260) 481-6804.

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