Mortenson Construction Tackling Major Projects

SRC Library Renovation

In its latest projects for College of DuPage, Mortenson Construction is undertaking major renovations of the school’s Library and McAninch Arts Center, or the MAC. This $69 million in construction work, slated to be completed in the spring of 2014, is part of a major, multi-year effort to overhaul College of DuPage’s facilities and remake its campus to better accommodate its changing student population.

In the past three years, Mortenson has been the lead contractor for $140 million in new construction and building renovations at COD, including gutting and rehabbing the main classroom building, Berg Instructional Center (BIC). The BIC project won a Grand Prize ABBY (America’s Best Buildings of the Year) Award and was featured on the October 2012 cover of Buildings magazine. Mortenson also built the new Student Services Center, which serves as a student union and houses admissions, registration, financial assistance, counseling and advising, veterans’ affairs, career services, student activities, game rooms and other amenities, which had been scattered among three other buildings.

The changes reflect College of DuPage’s move from primarily a commuter school to one that offers opportunities for a more traditional college experience for full-time students as well as meets the needs of working professionals and adults taking courses to continue their education. With nearly 30,000 students each term, College of DuPage is the second-largest college or university in Illinois.

“The improvements are designed to help students succeed, with places to learn, study, meet and hang out,” says Greg Werner, vice-president and Chicago office head for Mortenson Construction. “COD also has incorporated the latest technology, from smart classrooms to energy-efficient materials, to position the college for the future.”

The library makeover represents the final stage of Mortenson’s phased demolition and rebuild of the Student Resource Center, which includes the school’s main IT operations, finance department and other administrative offices. Mortenson will be cutting an opening in the building’s structural slab to create a two-story atrium and install new mechanical, electrical and technology systems. It also is reconfiguring the layout, opening up more study spaces for individual and group use and to accommodate growing electronic formats.

For the MAC, Mortenson is upgrading and expanding most of the academic, performance and administrative areas. It is putting a 2,700 square foot addition on the west side of the building to create an art gallery for performances and exhibits by students and professional artists and building a new front entrance with a glass canopy. Improvements will create a state-of-the-art performance experience for patrons, artists and students, including: new dressing rooms, scene shop, costume shop, lighting, video, recording and audio booths, seating, ticketing area, catering and bar space, coat check, lobbies and restrooms. Mortenson also is taking apart the current compartmentalized teaching areas to create more open classrooms, recital and practice rooms, and music studios to invite greater participation and enhance visibility of the programs.

“Mortenson has been a true partner in helping us achieve our goal of taking College of DuPage to the next level of performance and service to our community,” says Bruce Schmiedl, Director of Facilities at College of DuPage. “They work closely with us to deliver projects on time and on budget, and Mortenson excels at minimizing disruption to students, faculty and staff during construction.”

(Story submitted by Mortenson Construction)

Caption: This artist's rendering shows the new upper level of the College of DuPage Library in the Student Resource Center.