Cal State Fullerton is approaching its 60th anniversary and many of the university’s buildings are slated for renovations.
During the 2017-2018 academic year, CSUF has five major renovation projects planned involving improvements for McCarthy Hall, the Pollak Library, the Kinesiology and Health Science building, the Performing Arts Center and Langsdorf Hall.
For this academic year, CSUF has two renovation projects now that the TSU expansion has been completed: the Pollak Library Phase 1 renovation and the McCarthy Hall Phase 1 renovation.
The Pollak Library renovations are in response to a 5.1 earthquake that occurred in 2014 that caused millions of dollars in damage. Repairs will not be completed for several years, and the total estimated cost of the renovation project is between $30 and $40 million.
Pollak Library Phase 1 Renovations began September 2015 and will cost an estimated $12 million.
“There are a lot of things that influence cost … We are in an environment where we have limited funds, so we do (meet budgets) quite a bit, said Tinnah Medina, the director of capital projects at CSUF. “But part of construction is mitigating risk, a lot of it is unknown.”
Phase 1 has an estimated completion date towards the end of 2017 The renovations will be done on the first, third and fifth floors of the south wing of the library, and more than 641,000 books will be transported from the south to the north wing. The renovations will also include adding more seating areas and purchasing new furniture.
Phase 2 of the Pollak Library renovations are expected to begin in 2018.
The most recent library renovation before this was the addition of the four-story steel-and-glass framed structure between the north and south wings that was completed in 1996.
The university is requesting $14,765,000 from the CSU system for the first phase of a McCarthy Hall renovation. The renovation will address life safety needs, correct conveying system deficiencies and upgrading Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) access.
Renovations on the Kinesiology and Health Science building, the Joseph Clayes III Performing Arts Center and Langsdorf Hall are all currently slated as “Future Projects” in the Fullerton Capital Improvement Plan. They are set to happen at a currently undetermined time between the 2017-2018 academic year and the 2020-2021 academic year.
The Kinesiology and Health Science building renovations will upgrade the facilities in the building to match current health promotion programs that have changed since the building was first constructed in the 1960s. Classrooms and laboratories are set to see improvements, as will the Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems.
The Joseph Clayes III Performing Arts Center will have building systems improved and renovations made to meet ADA codes. There will also be adjustments made to scene changing mechanics and the orchestra pit.
Certain hazardous materials such as lead and asbestos will be removed from both the Kinesiology building and Performing Arts Center.
Langsdorf Hall, which was originally built in 1970, will be improved to meet building codes and address “programmatic deficiencies.” Utility system will also have upgrades and classrooms will be modernized, which will add more lecture space for Full Time Equivalent students and get rid of some faculty offices.
In August 2003, the Kinesiology and Health Science building was added to the physical education structure.
Construction of the Joseph Clayes III Performing Arts Center addition was completed January 2006. The addition was a concert hall and was completed at a total cost of $41,903,139.00.
The nine-story wing of Langsdorf Hall received a seismic retrofit in 2001 that cost $2,821,000.
The total cost of all projects on the Capital Outlay Program Priority List for the 2016-2017 academic year, which contains the construction and renovation plans for every university in the CSU system, is $568,362,000.
In the 2016-2017 academic year, CSUF has a $31,415,000 Capital Improvement Plan, while in the 2017-2018 academic year, the university’s costs will come to $50,119,000. The 2017-2018 costs will come from modernization and renovation needs ($28,646,000) and new facilities ($15,923,000).
Compared to CSUF, Cal State University, Long Beach has an $8,997,000 Capital Improvement Plan for the 2016-2017 academic year and a $56,833,000 Capital Improvement Plan for the 2017-2018 academic year.
Cal State University, San Bernardino, has a $62,311,000 Capital Improvement Plan for the 2016-2017 academic year and a $8,370,000 Capital Improvement Plan for 2017-2018.
By 2021, if all needs for critical infrastructure deficiencies, modernization, renovation and new facilities and infrastructure are met, CSUF will cost the CSU system an estimated $388,490,000.
Some buildings are being renovated to improve safety in case of natural disasters such as earthquakes.
“We have to remember that most buildings on campus were constructed in the late 1960s … Since then, the International Building Code and Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOC) has updated the Structural/Seismic Design Manual many times,” said Sudarshan Kurwadkar, assistant professor of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, in an email interview.
Medina said that the university’s potential exposure in the case of a natural disaster “isn’t too bad.”
“The system goes through a priority of most exposed risks to the campus versus less,” Medina said. “In comparison to the system (as a whole), this campus actually does pretty well.”
At this point, administrators are securing campus buildings against the possibility of minor damages, like those to the library.
“(Safety) is a relative term. We are looking at the least safe issues and trying to address those. There is nothing on campus that we would consider to be a real hazard at this point, even in the case of an earthquake,” said Roy Gonzales, director of Administrative Services and Strategic Planning.
While the damages to the library were costly, no one was injured in the earthquake. University officials are adamant about the fact that safety of university inhabitants is of the utmost concern.
“There is no way to know what the impact of a seismic event would be. If you take the library, for example, there was some damage, but mostly ceilings were damaged. We are working on looking at that, but there weren’t major structural issues,” Gonzales said.