Fox & Fowle Architects, P.C.

Pictured above is an interior model of the new Martin J. Whitman School of Management building.


Fox & Fowle Architects, P.C.
An architectural illustration of the new Martin J. Whitman School of Management building and first-floor lounge area.

Steve Sartori

Construction is under way on the new Martin J. Whitman
School of Management building.

Syracuse University is committed to offering students a full range of educational opportunities that will prepare them to meet the challenges of the 21st century. To achieve this goal, the University needs more—and better—classrooms, studios, labs, and research facilities. After an interval of detailed studies and institutional soul-searching, the University is moving forward with its comprehensive Space Plan to systematically address these needs.

All over campus, jackhammers, cement mixers, and construction cranes are out in force, translating blueprints into bricks and mortar. Work is already under way on the new home of the Martin J. Whitman School of Management and an adjacent parking garage in the Marshall Street area. Hinds Hall is about to be renovated for the School of Information Studies, and work on a third Newhouse building will soon begin.

The Space Plan is based on a comprehensive evaluation of the University’s facility needs. According to Associate Vice Chancellor Michael A. Flusche, planning for academic facilities at Syracuse University is driven by several goals, including addressing the priorities and initiatives of the Academic Plan. “The Space Plan must respond to the immediate needs of a number of academic units,” says Flusche, who notes that the plan must be guided by a long-term strategy to move forward in a cost-effective manner. “The University must expand its research capability, especially in the life sciences and environmental sciences,” he says. “At the same time, we must be able to respond creatively and quickly to the availability of major grants.” As an example, Flusche cited New York State awarding a multimillion-dollar grant to SU to establish the Center of Excellence in Environmental Systems, a regional consortium involving university, research, corporate, and economic development partners.

Steve Sartori

The front of Slocum Hall, above, will lead into a sky-lit, four-story atrium that’s shown at right and below through computer-generated models.

Of the many new projects in various states of development, perhaps none is more pressing than the construction of a life sciences addition to the Center for Science and Technology (CST) to house the biology and chemistry departments. Indeed, meeting these departments’ space requirements is widely regarded as the main reason behind the building program. “Once it was determined that Lyman Hall and the Biological Research Laboratories could not be modified to meet occupants’ needs, we started looking at scenarios that involved moving those departments to different buildings,” says academic space planner Christopher Danek. The possibilities included adding on to Lyman Hall, expanding CST, or constructing a separate facility.

Garrison Architects

Establishing new or different locations for the biology and chemistry departments presented opportunities for other departments facing space shortages. Flusche and Danek teamed with Virginia Denton ’61, the director of SU’s Office of Design and Construction who recently retired. Together, they identified multiple scenarios for the space that would become available. “Each option came with an associated cost,” Danek says, “and it quickly became apparent that the entire building package could eventually top $180 to $200 million.” As costs grew, Chancellor Kenneth A. Shaw requested additional research on the University’s space needs. The University retained Dober, Lidsky, and Craig Associates Inc. (DLCA), a Boston-based campus and facility planning firm, to assess SU’s space requirements and compare the University’s facilities with those of competing institutions. “Syracuse knew what the problem was, but didn’t know how it compared with other institutions,” DLCA president Arthur J. Lidsky says. “They didn’t know whether they were looking at a realistic set of numbers. We helped them understand the justification for the need. We gave them the framework, and they set the priorities.”

Working with DLCA, University space planners determined that SU lacked a million square feet of teaching space versus competing schools; bridging that gap could cost more than $200 million. “Based on that information, it was clear the campus had to prioritize,” Danek says. “We knew that we couldn’t afford a $250 to $300 million package.”

Garrison Architects

As a result of this analysis and a review of institutional priorities, the University ultimately decided to add 800,000 square feet of academic and research space at a cost of about $180 million over the next 7 to 10 years. That construction will bring the University closer to its competitors’ population densities (based on square feet of teaching space per faculty member).

Denton points out that SU has always carefully planned new construction, with the projected use of existing structures being an important consideration. This approach has spared the University the burden of maintaining an overbuilt campus. The University is equally cautious with regard to financing new projects. “The University won’t start to build until the resources for a given project—whether from borrowing, fund raising, or current funds—have been identified,” Denton says.

For that reason, fund raising has a big impact on the construction timetable. The Newhouse III project, for instance, moved quickly ahead when the S.I. Newhouse Foundation gave the University $15 million. Similarly, construction of the new building for the Whitman School began thanks to the school’s successful fund-raising initiative and the contributions of alumni and other donors. Stuart Olsten ’74, formerly chairman of Olsten Corp., is representative of the many alumni whose contributions helped jump-start the construction project. “I’ve always been indebted to Syracuse,” Olsten says. “I know how important it is for students to receive a well-rounded education, work with the best professors, and have access to all of today’s tools and technologies. I’d like to see this school ranked among the top 10 in the country, and I think the new building will be very helpful in doing that.” The building’s food court will bear Olsten’s name in recognition of his gift.

Steve Sartori

Hinds Hall, above, will be renovated to house the School of Information Studies. Computer-generated models, below, provide a glimpse of some of the interior changes planned.

Guy E. Runyon, president of the Runyon Organization Inc., a financial planning firm based in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey, became involved as the father of a management student. “While it’s wonderful to have benefactors like Mr. Whitman, they only come around once in a generation,” Runyon says. “But no matter at what level you give, every contribution helps. If everyone gives one book, pretty soon you have a library. If enough people sponsor rooms, before you know it, you have a building. It’s the spirit of the giving that counts.”

Now, as the University looks to the future through the focused lens of the Academic Plan, it can turn to the Space Plan to ensure that it has optimal facilities. “The Academic Plan outlines goals and objectives critical to the concept of a student-centered research university,” Lidsky says. “It also strengthens the notion of giving special nurture to those programs that can be among the top 5 or 10 in the nation. By upgrading its facilities, SU significantly improves the chances of making that happen.”

Ashley McGraw Architects, P.C.

Ashley McGraw Architects, P.C.

Steve Sartori
An addition to the Center for Science and Technology will become a new Life Sciences Center.

Steve Sartori
The administrative offices of the Division of International Programs Abroad are now headquartered at the north end of Walnut Park.

Steve Sartori
The Newhouse complex, in the foreground above, will feature a third building, scheduled for completion in 2006.

Making Room
The Space Plan includes the following projects:

Martin J. Whitman School of Management Building—Faced with a critical shortage of classroom space, the Whitman School is scheduled to vacate the Crouse-Hinds Building and settle in its new home by January 2005. The project adds approximately 85,000 square feet of classroom and office space, making it the largest single building added to the University’s physical plant since Eggers Hall was built in 1993.

Life Sciences Center, Center for Science and Technology (CST)—The development of the new Life Sciences Center, an addition to CST, represents much more than a bricks-and-mortar project. By bringing biology and chemistry together in a single location, both disciplines will benefit from shared facilities and research resources. “At Syracuse, biology and chemistry are housed in buildings that were designed for a style of teaching that is no longer practiced,” consultant Arthur J. Lidsky says. “The life sciences addition brings these two strong departments together and allows them to have the interdisciplinary programs that are essential today.”

Architects are in the early stages of designing the facility, working closely with faculty to ensure that requirements are met. At this point, it appears the new building may encompass up to 140,000 square feet of classroom and laboratory space, almost doubling CST’s size. Construction is scheduled for completion by summer 2007.

Hinds Hall—Plans are well under way to renovate Hinds Hall to become the new home of the School of Information Studies. In effect, the school is trading its current space in CST with the L.C. Smith College of Engineering and Computer Science. To facilitate the swap, the Hinds renovation will be done in several phases, with a projected completion date of December 2005. Hinds will be gutted, leaving only the exterior walls, and rebuilt as one of the most “wired” buildings on campus. In addition to hosting numerous computer servers and high-end information technology programs, Hinds will house the Center for Natural Language Processing. “The building will have a much more open feel and will have space for collaborative work, since the school performs significant research with other disciplines,” says School of Information Studies Dean Ray von Dran.

Biological Research Laboratories (BRL)—Once renovated, BRL will provide ideal space for general-purpose academic programs (classrooms, offices, seminar rooms, etc.). The building is also being considered as a possible new home for the College of Arts and Sciences’ humanities programs. “We’d essentially open the structure up and rebuild it as what an architect’s sketch depicts as a showcase facility at the end of Euclid Avenue,” says academic space planner Christopher Danek. As a humanities center, the redeveloped space would provide up to 42,000 square feet of classrooms and offices. Work is scheduled to begin after the biology department relocates to CST (summer 2007). The refurbished building should be ready by 2009.

Slocum Hall—Changes in technology are driving the need for more space in the School of Architecture as well. “In the old days, you had a drafting table and a stool,” says Virginia Denton, SU’s recently retired director of design and construction. Today, she notes, computers play a prominent role in architectural design. The solution to acquiring additional space for the School of Architecture involves finding appropriate new space for several programs in the College of Human Services and Health Professions and the College of Visual and Performing Arts that currently share Slocum with the architecture school.

“From an architectural standpoint, the Slocum Hall renovation is one of the more interesting Space Plan initiatives,” Danek says. “Current plans involve restoring Slocum’s sky-lit, four-story atrium and center hall, and may eventually include restoring the 1918 front stairs and grand entry.” Work on Slocum Hall will progress in phases, with project completion slated for 2009.

Crouse-Hinds Building—Once the Whitman School is in its new home on University Avenue (January 2005), Crouse-Hinds will be enlarged and reconfigured for use by other schools and colleges. “Tentative plans call for a significant addition to Crouse-Hinds, which would provide expansion space for the Maxwell School,” says Associate Vice Chancellor Michael A. Flusche. Crouse-Hinds will also provide a new, consolidated home for the College of Human Services and Health Professions.

Newhouse III—This addition to the Newhouse complex will increase available classroom and office space, as well as offer an array of new facilities designed for the collaborative, multidisciplinary training necessary to meet the challenges of the digital communications age. Newhouse III construction is scheduled to begin in early 2005 and be substantially completed by December 2006.

Chiller Plant—A top Space Plan priority is to expand the University’s chilled water facility, which provides air conditioning for campus facilities. “We couldn’t cool a new building if we didn’t add on to the chiller plant,” Danek says. A new 3,000-ton chiller will be installed to provide air conditioning for an additional 1 million square feet of space, which should adequately serve the proposed building initiatives, as well as new central air-conditioning systems for Slocum Hall and Carnegie Library.

University Avenue Garage—The construction of an 820-car parking structure at University Avenue and Harrison Street is considered essential to the practical integration of the new University facilities on the northern edge of Main Campus.

Other Initiatives—The Space Plan also involves several smaller projects, including two properties on Walnut Park. “The University is committed to maintaining Walnut Park,” Danek says. “DIPA [Division of International Programs Abroad] recently relocated its administrative offices to a building at the north end of Walnut Park, and a marvelous old house on the 200 block of Walnut Park recently was refurbished for use by student counseling services.”






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