The Downtown campus’ two major construction projects are inching closer to the building phase, with officials saying the projects should be underway within the next couple of months.
After the Downtown student recreation center project’s several-month delay of approval from the Phoenix Joint Committee on Capital Review, lead architect Jan Lorant said they still have a “very aggressive construction schedule” and will begin construction within two months.
ASU still expects the approximately $20 million project to be completed by late summer 2013.
The recreation center will be connected to the south side of the downtown YMCA on First Avenue. Designs include a patio between the two buildings with some outdoor seating.
In order to make up for lost time, some of the phases of pre-construction have been overlapped, Lorant said. This could continue into the construction phase, with construction beginning before all construction paperwork is filed.
Since the original designs were presented to students and faculty in September, several small adjustments have been made, Lorant said, but the overall structure remains the same.
The five-story building is going to have cardio equipment and weights on the ground floor and a few multi-purpose rooms and an academic space on the second floor.
Courtesy of ASU
Basketball courts will fill the third floor, an indoor track will encircle them on the fourth floor and the roof will host the lounging pool.
The other major Downtown construction project — renovations to the U.S. Federal Post Office — is set to get underway in the next several weeks.
The plans are to renovate part of the building and create a community center on campus, similar to the Memorial Union on the Tempe campus.
Plans from September call for about half of the post office to be renovated for student engagement, which includes conference rooms, classrooms, storage and lounge space.
The post office will also connect to the adjacent Civic Space Park via a City of Phoenix park expansion currently under construction.
The first step is demolition, which will hopefully start by mid-March, said ASU Associate Vice President Michael Coakley. Older interior walls need to be cleared before the construction can begin.
The $4.7 million renovations will create a “mini-MU” downtown and should be completed by December, Coakley said.
The construction was first intended to begin October 2011 and end May 2012, but ASU expected possible delays when they set that date in April 2011.
They later set a completion date of August 2012, but this too has been pushed back due to planning delays, including the design’s later-than-expected passage through the Joint Committee on Capital Review.
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