Construction begins for College of Education building
Construction recently began on the College of Education building that will be located at the intersection of West Samford Avenue and Duncan Drive, former site of the Hill Residence Halls.
The $77 million facility is scheduled for completion in the spring of 2025.
In November 2022, the Auburn University Board of Trustees approved construction of the 167,000-square-foot, three-story building that will include modern and collaborative classrooms, instructional laboratories, up-to-date technology and administrative spaces for faculty and staff.
“The new facility will enable the college to consolidate its departments into one building that is located at a prominent campus location,” said Simon Yendle, assistant vice president for Planning, Design and Construction at Facilities Management. “It will feature large bright classrooms and lecture halls like those in the Mell Classroom Building and the Academic Classroom and Laboratory Complex.”
The college’s building is designed around modern teaching methods and practices.
“Classroom spaces are designed to give students different learning experiences based on areas of interest,” Yendle said. “It will also offer innovative office concepts where faculty spaces are not just offices, they also include additional space for teaching to take place outside of the classroom.”
Creating a student-centered facility has been at the forefront of planning and will continue to guide decisions as the college prepares to move to its new space.
“Our new building will be a hub of activity to bring students together and give them easy access to their classrooms and laboratories,” said Jeffrey T. Fairbrother, dean of Auburn’s College of Education and Wayne T. Smith Distinguished Professor. “It will also provide a one-stop location for support services such as advising and those provided by our Learning Resources Center. Ultimately, our new facility will promote student collaboration in study and meeting spaces and, importantly, facilitate interaction with our faculty and staff. We are thrilled to have this opportunity to better serve our students.”
The building is also designed to be energy efficient and environmentally friendly. It is designed to earn LEED silver certification. LEED provides a framework for healthy, efficient and cost-saving green buildings.
“We are building smart buildings that are also compliant with the Alabama Commercial Energy Code,” Yendle said. “For example, the building will utilize daylight harvesting, an energy management technique that reduces overhead lighting use by using the ambient (natural and artificial) light present in the space.”
Submitted by: Martha Gentry