Alter Hall – Xavier University
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Limited finances, deteriorating infrastructure, outdated functionality, and campus context present challenges for dated classroom structures on most University campuses. Xavier University deemed the 1960’s-era Alter Hall academic building at the end of its useful life and sought cost-effective alternatives to a new building. A strategy emerged to transform the building by stripping it to its concrete structure, demolishing and reconstructing portions of its ends, and redeveloping it into a like-new academic building. Keys to its successful transformation included reusing existing infrastructure; creating a cohesive campus character; and developing effective, flexible interior spaces. The transformation of Alter Hall was a critical step in developing the cohesiveness of the campus. Its central location is prominent on the campus’ historic Row of Legacy yet also creates a connection to the campus’ 21st Century development. Alter Hall’s aggressive sustainability strategies exceed the University’s long-term climate action plan, resulting in the lowest energy consumption of all the buildings on campus. The project also creates a portfolio of flexible teaching and learning environments to accommodate a range of disciplines, curricula, and pedagogies. The result is a revitalized Alter Hall that is positioned to contribute to teaching and learning deep into the 21st century.