A small group of buildings left standing at Small Group

Jason Clevenger

$4M in renovations to convert Stewart Hall into new offices

Most of the residence halls at Small Group are now rubble, but a few will remain standing.

On Wednesday, the Board Of Trustees will discuss renovations on Stewart Hall. Four of the original 11 buildings at Small Group will be left standing: Stewart, Heer, Van Campen and Harbourt halls.

The renovation will provide new offices for Information Services, which are now located in several locations including the University Library, Moulton Hall and the Lincoln Building. This will allow them to condense their offices, which will likely benefit students, said Tom Euclide, executive director of facilities planning and operations.


• Electrical upgrades to buildings all across campus

• New chilled water system for Taylor Hall

• Replaced roof for Satterfield Hall

• New elevator built in the front of Prentice Hall, which currently only has a freight elevator

• Bathrooms in Beall/McDowell upgrades

Small Group was a residence area built in the late 1960s in East Campus that used to house students, mainly freshmen. Most of the buildings in Small Group were recently torn down.

Euclide said the former residence halls were torn down because students didn’t want to live so far away from the rest of the campus. The buildings would have also been expensive to renovate and make handicap accessible and they were not worth the cost.

The $4 million renovation will transform the former residence building into an office building.

Out of all the Small Group buildings, Stewart was chosen because it had a cafeteria.

“It was a cafeteria building, so it had a floor plan that worked as an office building,” Euclide said.

Converting a residence hall into an office building isn’t as complicated as some may think. The rooms can be converted into double offices. The lounges can be turned into conference and meeting rooms. After cleaning the kitchen and dining room and moving out all the machinery, they are big, open spaces that can be used for all kinds of things, Euclide said.

“It would be much harder to turn an office building into a dormitory,” Euclide said.

Tom Bernato, a junior finance major who used to live in Small Group, doesn’t think Stewart was the best choice for an office building.

“I would have picked McSweeney, at least for lower plaza, because that was where the desk was, and it already had offices located in it,” he said. “I think all the buildings should have been torn down. They were in bad shape.”

Kelley Krebs, a junior art education major, who also used to live in Small Group, said she doesn’t mind the former cafeteria being turned into an office.

“No one’s going over there now, so they might as well turn it into an office,” she said.

Heer, Harbourt and Van Campen halls, located across Loop Road, will stay up for future use.

Harbourt and Heer might be used to house international students if they are needed. If not, they will be torn down as well.

Contact College of Arts and Sciences reporter Jason Clevenger at [email protected].