Campus construction continues for 2000-01

GW’s incoming class will see multiple construction projects around campus next year.

Major renovations on the Marvin Center, GW’s student center at the corner of 21st and H streets, will begin in August, said Mike Gargano, assistant vice president for Student and Academic Support Services.

A four-story addition is planned for the 21st Street side of the building, which will make room for an expanded bookstore and a Great Hall, Gargano said.

The Great Hall will be an entranceway into the Marvin Center, Gargano said. It can be used as a lounge and gathering area and it certainly can be dressed up for (events such as) receptions.

The renovations will effect foot traffic around the Marvin Center, Gargano said.

There will be times that the 21st Street entrance will be shut down and the main entrance will be the H Street side, he said.

The major renovations are not scheduled to be complete until October 2001, Gargano said.

Construction on a new Marvin Center elevator and repairs to the outer surface of the building are still in progress, but Gargano said they should be completed shortly.

The Dorothy Marvin Betts Theatre is closed for upgrades, which include new seats and carpeting. It is expected to reopen spring 2001.

The Marvin Center ballroom, located on the third floor, will also close after the last Colonial Inauguration is complete. It will reopen in October.

The new School of Media and Public Affairs building, located across from the Marvin Center, is scheduled for completion in January. Faculty members will move into offices midway through fall semester. Classes in the new building are expected to begin January 2001.

The building will have state-of-the-art technological capabilities, said SMPA Director Jean Folkerts in the March 30 issue of The Hatchet.

A television studio, editing suites and an audio-video center will be included in the building. The student media center will work out of the building, broadcasting on a cable channel, Folkerts said.

Most classrooms will be wired with Internet access, Folkerts said.

In addition to basic and seminar-style classrooms, the SMPA building will house the Center for Survey Research, Folkerts said. The center will be equipped with computers lining the walls and a conference table for group discussions in the center of the room.

The improvement for professors will be tremendous because now professors feel like they are teaching over the computers, Folkerts said.

Other construction around campus includes a new Health and Wellness Center, located on 23rd and G streets.

The center will provide amenities such as a three-lane running track, racquetball and squash courts, weight rooms and a juice bar, Director of Athletics Jack Kvancz said in the Febraury 16, 1999 edition of The Hatchet.

The center will provide more exercise options than the Smith Center, Kvancz said.

The new center, which will not house varsity sports, will provide a place for students to play intramural sports or exercise on their own.

The center is scheduled to open November 2000.

Construction for a new Elliot School of International Affairs building is also underway. Classes are scheduled to begin in the facility Spring 2001. The new building will hold faculty offices currently located in the basement of Stuart Hall.

While all of the construction is within GW’s official boundaries, Foggy Bottom residents and Foggy Bottom’s Advisory Neighborhood Commission oppose GW’s plans.

Conflicts between GW and the ANC have been ongoing since 1997, when GW began planning most of the construction.

ANC representatives oppose the large number of renovations and construction plans on the GW campus, citing traffic and parking problems for the surrounding community, according to an October 17, 1998 story in The Hatchet.

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