Exciting news! Groundbreaking is set for the new Trinity Academic Center on Saturday, May 31 at 10 am. This wonderful moment — taking place when our graduates are here for Alumnae Reunion and also welcoming, students, faculty and staff to share in the celebration — will be a gigantic step forward in ensuring Trinity’s future.
At a hearing earlier this week, the D.C. Zoning Commission approved the project, an essential step in moving ahead with plans for groundbreaking. The Zoning Commission expressed great respect for Trinity and our remarkable mission today, and through their action they supported Trinity’s vision to ensure ongoing academic quality and excellence through these new laboratories and classrooms.
Planning for the new academic center has occurred over much of the last decade, about as far back as the day the Trinity Center for Women and Girls in Sports opened its doors in 2003. In the intervening years, our eagerness to create a beautiful new laboratory and classroom building slowed in the financial reality of the recession, and the many other needs of our campus. But in 2010, with Trinity’s financial strength growing along with enrollment, the Board of Trustees approved the start of the “concept design” process that gave us ideas to take to donors.
Many generous alumnae and benefactors stepped forward to support this very significant project, and last summer, as previously announced, Joan Payden ’53 contributed $10 million to propel the project from desire to reality, and the campaign now tops $20 million.
With that support, we were able to assemble the project team. We retained a wonderful design/build team including Clark Construction and EYP Architects to create the specific building design, and with the help of a firm called PFM our financial team began the very serious work of developing the financial plan for this $40 million project. At the same time, our legal team at the firm Goulston Storrs tackled the legal preparation for the project, and partners at Jones Lang LaSalle provide great project management expertise for this effort.
We now have a building design and floor plans to share with students, faculty and staff, and so in the next several weeks I will be announcing a series of meetings to review the details with all members of the campus community. Watch your email for my announcement of the meeting opportunities.
- 8 new science laboratories and related prep spaces
- 4 new Nursing and health assessment laboratories including simulation labs
- Spaces for Clinical Mental Health and Psychology simulation rooms
- 21 new classrooms for all students in all disciplines
- Classrooms of many different sizes with movable furniture
- Lounges and study areas on each floor
- New technology center and modern technology access throughout
The new academic center will replace the Science Building. We will continue to hold classes and labs in the Science Building until the new building is open, which will be in time for the Fall 2016 semester.
We will also be building new roads and access points for the campus, and re-arranging parking areas to provide a more manageable parking plan and better traffic flows.
Having this modern, functional, comfortable and highly accessible new academic center will give Trinity students, faculty and staff a lot more room to engage in the great work of teaching and learning that goes on here every day. At the same time, this new facility will make it possible for us to consider more renovations in Main Hall, which remains the heart of our campus and still the most heavily used building on campus. As we all know, Main needs a lot of work, some of which can only occur once we have “swing space” for classes.
Piqued your interest? Much more to come! I will provide more information and updates in this space, and also visit our Academic Center website regularly since we will post construction updates once the project starts.
And please come to the campus meetings that I will announce shortly!
Watch this space for updates on the project…