Historic U.S. Post Office now home to finalized ASU Downtown campus student center

Photos by Madeline Pado

After two years of planning and construction, the ASU Downtown campus student center in the historic U.S. Post Office building is finally open to ASU students and faculty.

The new student center officially opened at 1 p.m. on Jan. 7, the first day of the 2013 spring semester. The center is accessible through an entrance on the south end of the building. Students can enter by swiping their Sun Card.

The downtown writing center and math lab were relocated to the Post Office in August of 2012 and a new wing and floor that make up the rest of the student center are now available to the ASU downtown community.

The center’s new facilities include a large lounge area, multipurpose ballroom, convenience store, Changemaker Central headquarters, game zone and multiple conference rooms.

The center also houses headquarters for Programming and Activities Board and USGD, as well as a senate conference room and office for the USGD President and his executive staff.

Barrett, the Honors College, Sen. Travis Arbon said the members of the USGD Senate are excited to begin meetings in a specialized room after previously meeting in the grand conference room on the first floor of the Post Office.

“It’s definitely a step up,” Arbon said.

Public service and policy senior Marcus Jones was the student representative who oversaw the student center’s creation. He said he is hoping student organizations will take advantage of the space and utilities now provided through the center.

“We have ninety student organizations downtown now,” Jones said. “They needed a place to meet, so we have five conference rooms for them to do so.”

Two of these conference rooms can seat 40-50 people and come equipped with an 80-inch television and webcam so organizations can host conference calls with individuals in other locations.

The other three rooms, while smaller, are also well equipped to fit the needs of student clubs. All of the conference rooms are available by reservation.

For students looking for a place to lounge, do homework or hang out with friends, the student center offers ample space.

Most of the upper level is filled with cushioned chairs and tables where students can do schoolwork. More importantly, many of the tables come with power outlets, something students expressed a high demand for when planning the new facilities, Jones said.

The lower level of the student center has foosball, pingpong and air hockey tables, as well as space for a billiards table in the future. It is also home to a 70-inch television, which will soon have game consoles such as Xbox and Wii available to students who bring their own games.

The lower lounge will also host a variety of events put on by PAB, said Jessica Coronado, the PAB Downtown president.

“We’re having our first karaoke night sometime in January,” Coronado said. “We’re planning on doing a lot of different activities.”

As more students filter in to see what the student center has to offer, the faculty and students who helped create it are hoping word will spread.

“This (student center) is by the students, for the students,” Associate Dean of Students Cassandra Aska said. “The students did everything to make it … now they’re going to bring it to life.”

Contact the reporter at linnea.bennett@asu.edu