USU to make renovations and changes its top priority

Caitlin Martin

The USU Board of Directors voted to replace the 500 chairs in the Plaza del Sol performance hall, on Monday. Photo Credit: Andres Aguila / Daily Sundial

Plaza del Sol will soon be brought up to date with its campus companion, the VPAC, after USU board of directors voted Monday to replace the hall’s 500 chairs and renovate the lobby.

The renovation of the entire hall and lobby was already passed by the university, but the USU is financially responsible for the chairs, said Colin Donahue, assistant vice president of facilities development and operations.

The total cost for both the renovation of the hall and the lobby is estimated at $1 million, and new chairs would cost an additional $375,000, said Debra Hammond, USU executive director.

Some board members questioned the necessity of replacing the chairs, but others clarified the funds would come from the Dormitory Building Maintenance and Equipment Reserve Fund, which was already approved for the year’s sole project thus far.

The 17-year-old chairs do not match those in the new VPAC, and by updating the space and fixtures, the performance hall will stay competitive with other campus amenities, Hammond said.

The renovations to the hall, which include seating, main aisle and wall carpeting, acoustic wall fabric and a new stage curtain, would begin in December and are expected to last through January, according to a power point presentation. The lobby will not be renovated until next summer to avoid semester disruption.

Combined construction projects could hinder campus convenience, Hammond said. The recreation center is being finished on the same north side of campus and already many pathways are being blocked.

The summer-slated renovation of the lobby will include replacing the acoustical ceiling, a new ticket and concession booth, new wall panels and column covers, new paint, and a carpet replacement.