North Park University Campus Buildings Renovated, Updated this Summer

Anderson Hall Renovations
Renovations in Anderson Hall were extensive, including a newly refurbished lobby.

Meanwhile, site prep continues for the Johnson Center

CHICAGO (August 20, 2012) — As site preparation proceeds for the highly anticipated Nancy and G. Timothy Johnson Center for Science and Community Life, several notable improvements were also made to existing campus facilities this summer, said Carl Balsam, North Park University executive vice president and chief financial officer.

Residents moving into the Anderson Hall this month will see significant changes, including code-mandated infrastructure improvements — such as a retrofit of fire sprinkler systems and the upgrade of an obsolete elevator — combined with substantial improvements to the living spaces of the building, Balsam said. "The entry lobby was completely redesigned and furnished. The rooms were freshly carpeted and repainted. Perhaps most notable was the installation of new furnishings in all of the rooms, including modular furniture that can be stacked in a variety of combinations," he said.

New wood doors with Salto locking devices were added throughout Anderson Hall, allowing residents' access to their rooms via the proximity chip in their ID cards. Also added was a new mechanical room which houses the fire sprinkler pump and associated gear, as well as hot water heaters that were added after flooding in 2008, Balsam said. 

Outside Anderson Hall, a small parking lot for institutional vehicles was added, since coordination for institutional vehicles was transferred to Magnuson Campus Center and will be under the direction of Dan Gooris, director of campus security and auxiliary services. Gooris and his team will administer driving tests for those wishing to drive institutional vehicles.

Other improvements include continuing refurbishment of various campus offices, including the IT offices in Caroline Hall. Code-mandated fire sprinklers were installed in the Carlson Tower and some Seminary apartments were renovated.

Site preparation for the Johnson Center began shortly after the conclusion of the 2011–2012 academic year. Large trees were relocated from the north berm area of the proposed construction site to other locations on campus, clearing the way for the building site. The University worked with electric supplier ComEd to relocate a significant electrical conduit before the removal of some campus apartments began on the north side of the Greenspace.

A formal groundbreaking ceremony for the 101,000-square-foot Johnson Center is planned for October 26, with construction expected to be completed in time for the 2014 fall semester.

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