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Foundation, IUP to Break Ground for Phase III of Residential Revival

Sutton Suites

The Foundation for Indiana University of Pennsylvania and IUP will break ground Thursday for Phase III of the Residential Revival project, a public-private collaboration that is revolutionizing the way students live and learn at IUP.

Phase III of this $270 million multiphase project will offer two new buildings—the Sutton Suites and Suites on Pratt—with approximately 1,084 beds for fall 2009.

To make way for these new buildings, Campus Towers, Esch and Wallace halls and the Pechan Health Center will be razed.

The Sutton Suites building, to be at the corner of Pratt Drive and Grant Street, the current location of Esch and Wallace halls, is designed to reflect the architecture of Sutton Hall, the university’s main administration building.

Sutton Suites will include a number of rooms for meetings and recreation, as well as a multipurpose room that accommodates up to 150 people. The Suites on Pratt will be along Maple Street at the current location of Campus Towers. This building will remain open during university breaks to accommodate international students.

Campus Towers was built in 1971 by a private business, and the university purchased the building in 1990. Along with University Towers, Campus Towers became one of the first two buildings to offer apartment-style living on campus.

Esch Hall, constructed in 1973, has served the university for 35 years as a coeducational residence facility. The building was named after Mary L. Esch, who served as the university’s registrar for 50 years.

Wallace Hall was constructed in 1973 as a mirror image of Esch Hall and, like Esch, has served as a coeducational residential building. The facility was named in honor of Florence Wallace, a social studies professor at IUP from 1933 to 1964.

Pechan Health Center was built in 1968 and named after Pennsylvania Sen. Albert R. Pechan, a former dentist from Ford City, who died in 1969.

Medical services offered in the Pechan Health Center will be relocated to the Center for Health and Well-Being, to be housed in the Suites on Maple East, which will be completed for fall 2008 as part of Phase II of the project. In addition to health center services, the Center for Health and Well-Being will include the Office of Health Awareness; the Office of Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Education, and the Center for Counseling and Psychological Services.

The Foundation for IUP, a nonprofit entity, will own the buildings once completed. The foundation is coordinating the construction of the project through developer Allen and O’Hara of Memphis, Tenn. Massaro Corp. of Pittsburgh is the general contractor for the project. The buildings were designed by WTW Architects of Pittsburgh.

The Foundation for IUP has authorized the donation of surplus furniture from the buildings being razed to a variety of nonprofit agencies. Approximately 3,300 pieces of furniture will be redistributed to local and regional agencies in Pennsylvania, including the Indiana Fire Association, The Salvation Army, Indiana County Community Action Program, Central Pennsylvania Christian Institute, Christian Retreat Center, Miracle Mountain Ranch and Mission and the Camping Association of Presbyteries of Northwestern Pennsylvania.

The remaining items will be donated to Christian Appalachian Project, based in eastern Kentucky, which provides assistance to more than 1,600 charities in 13 Appalachian states.

Initiating this donation were students participating in IUP’s Alternative Spring Break program, who have worked with this project for the past three years. Each charitable organization is responsible for the loading, transporting and redistribution of the donated items.

The Residential Revival involves the replacement or renovation of 14 of IUP’s residence halls with buildings that integrate a “living-learning” philosophy into their design. During the four phases of the Residential Revival, IUP will maintain its current bed capacity of approximately 3,800. Freshmen are required to live on campus.

The project is part of a federal program called LEED, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. All of the buildings in the project are designed to reflect a “green building” philosophy.

“It has been an honor for The Foundation for IUP to be able to support the university by serving as the building coordinator for this project,” said Andrew Stephenson, co-chair of the Foundation for IUP Residence Hall Project Committee. “We look at this as a program, not just a project. We are proud to continue this project with the Phase III groundbreaking event.”

All of the new buildings will be four stories or fewer. They will incorporate campus amenities and services into the facility and will be surrounded by green space in conjunction with the university’s green space plan.

The Residential Revival’s continued advancement is symbolic of the investment in IUP’s future, according to Dr. Tony Atwater, IUP president.

“We are committed to maintaining a legacy of excellence while moving forward to secure the university’s future for generations to come,” he said. “This nationally recognized capital project offers important linkages to the living-learning concept in order to ensure student academic success.

“These new buildings are complementing the look of an already beautiful campus in a very unique way,” Atwater said.

“This project not only meets our primary goal of serving our students, but also serves the community by attracting jobs and enhancing the economic climate of Indiana Borough and Indiana County.”

Atwater recognized members of the Foundation for IUP Board of Directors, the Foundation Residence Hall Committee, the executive board, foundation president Chris Holuta, past president Donna Putt, and state Sen. Don White for their commitment to the project.

“His influence and behind the scenes work on this project has been invaluable,” Atwater said of White.

Completed before the fall 2007 semester, Phase I of the Residential Revival involved the building of the Suites on Grant—Upper and the Suites on Grant—Lower, which will be officially dedicated as Susan Snell Delaney Hall, in honor of Susan Snell Delaney, a longtime member of the university’s Council of Trustees. The Suites on Grant buildings offer 746 beds and, in their amenities space, house the Informational Technology Support Center, the African American Cultural Center and numerous other IUP offices that provide primarily student services.

Phase II, to be completed by fall 2008, involves the building of the Suites on Maple and the Northern Suites. These buildings will provide 1,102 beds for students, and the Suites on Maple buildings will house numerous IUP offices in their amenities space.

The Student Residential Revival project was approved by the IUP Council of Trustees in December 2004 and by the State System of Higher Education Board of Governors in January 2005.

IUP’s current residence halls range in age from 28 to 52 years old and offer 14 academic specialty floors and the Robert E. Cook Honors College, a living-learning community in Whitmyre Hall. This is the sole remaining residence hall that will not be replaced.

The Residential Revival project had its beginnings in spring 2004 with an extensive planning and discussion process involving students, faculty and other members of the IUP and Indiana community.

Throughout the planning process, IUP officials have been clear that the project will replace current housing and will not add capacity.