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   from the issue of August 17, 2006

Summer Construction Updates


North Stadium Expansion Project

Memorial Stadium
 Memorial Stadium

The $50 million North Stadium Expansion Project at Memorial Stadium is ready for kickoff.

Feverish summer construction has installed more than 6,000 seats to the North Stadium increasing Memorial Stadium's capacity to over 80,000 fans.

The project includes the Osborne Athletic Complex under the North Stadium seating. The complex includes a new home for Husker football, moving coaches' offices and player locker rooms from the South Stadium. It also includes the Charles and Romona Myers Performance Center, with a strength complex, athletic medicine center, hydrotherapy pools and nutrition center.

Also in the expansion is the Hawks Championship Center, which opened to Nebraska football use in the spring. The center includes a 120-yard field with turf identical to that in Memorial Stadium. The Hawks Championship Center is connected to the Osborne Athletic Complex by a skybridge.

The inside of Memorial Stadium also gains new instant replay screens, including the largest screen in any college stadium in the United States. The screen measures 33 feet tall and 117 feet wide.

The expansion will allow Computer Science and Engineereing to use space in South Stadium.

Ralph Mueller Tower

Due to safety concerns, an orange snow fence was erected around Ralph Mueller Tower in June.

According to Ted Weidner, assistant vice chancellor for Facilities Management and Planning, weathering has caused the façade of the campus landmark to crumble or break away, revealing a series of noticeable chips.

Engineers examined the tower in late June.

"Essentially they told us to take off all the stone and put it back on again with the right stuff," Weidner said. "That does not mean the tower was constructed incorrectly. Some things just do not weather too well in Nebraska."

While no estimates are available, Weidner said the repair would be costly. The university is discussing long-term solutions with the University of Nebraska Foundation.

In the short term, Weidner said the engineers recommended the removal of any loose or chipped areas from the tower façade.

"We are scheduling that work and hope to complete it prior to the start of classes," he said. "When that is complete, we will remove the protective fence."

The tower sound system has not been affected and continues to function.

International Quilt Study Center

Construction of the International Quilt Study Center at 33rd and Holdrege streets began with a May 12 groundbreaking ceremony.

With preliminary work out of the way, construction will begin soon on the 37,000-square-foot building. Scheduled to open to the public in early 2008, the quilt center will house three exhibition galleries and state-of-the-art textiles storage. It will also be an international focal point for the study, conservation and exhibition of quilts.

The quilt center, part of the Department of Textiles, Clothing and Design, is the only academic program of its kind.

A quilt center construction cam is available online at

Temple Building
Temple Building


Temple Building

The legacy of NU alumnus Johnny Carson is being preserved in the Temple Building.

Funded by a $5.7 million gift from the late Carson, renovations on the Temple Building began in June. Improvements include expansion to Temple's Howell Theatre, a new theater and sound stage, a new scene shop and storage area and an upgraded main lobby.

An expansion to the south will provide additional space for the Howell Theatre. The space will be used for storage and an actors' exit. The stage will receive a computerized section of rigging.

A scene shop will be built to the east of the Howell Theatre stage, in the space between the Temple Building and the Mary Riepma Ross Media Arts Center. Space below the shop will be used to store scenery and props, allowing quicker access than current space on the fourth floor. The shop will include new tools, a ventilated welding area, dust collectors and a freight elevator to lift materials into the shop from street level.

In space north of the Howell Theatre - the former scene shop - a combination black box theater and sound stage will be created. The stage will have green-screen capabilities and may be used for television performances. Along with sound booth and lighting improvements, the space will include seating for 200 on the north and west sides.

The Temple Building lobby will gain new carpeting and the former north entrance will be reopened with stairs leading to the main level. The lobby renovation will include restroom and elevator improvements.

Additional improvements will bring the building up to code.

Construction is expected to continue through May.

Hardin Hall

Following months of renovation, Hardin Hall was rededicated during a June 13 open house.

First opened in 1961 as the Nebraska Center for Continuing Education, and renamed in 1994 in honor of Clifford Hardin, the building was constructed with a W.K. Kellogg Foundation grant and with private donations from Nebraskans. It provided study facilities, housing and meal service for thousands of adult and youth groups who came to UNL for conferences, workshops and institutes.

The NU Board of Regents approved a plan to renovate the building in January 2003.

Completely renovated, the Hardin Center provides faculty, staff and students in the School of Natural Resources with laboratories, classrooms and offices to support the university's teaching, research and Extension education programs in natural resources. The 157,000-square-foot facility also serves as the academic home for the Department of Statistics.

Hardin was chancellor from 1954 to 1968, when he accepted the nomination from President Richard Nixon to serve as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.

He retired from the post with distinction in 1971.

And, with the completion of the project, the North Stadium concourse is connected to those in the East and West.



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