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Augustana Observer

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February 24, 2024

SGA discusses plans for renovations to College Center and Bergendoff

Kent Barnds, vice president of enrollment, communication and planning, presented plans for renovating the College Center and Bergendoff Hall of Fine Arts at last week’s SGA meeting.
The plan to renovate the College Center began about a year ago to “address a campus area that has the least amount of attention,” Barnds said during his presentation.
The renovations would change the second floor dining area and the third floor into spaces to be used by the theatre department.
The dining area would be turned into a main theatre area and the second floor lobby would contain a ticket booth and an updated lobby. The new theatre would be able to seat approximately 260 people, whereas Potter Theatre only seats about 100 people.
The loft would be turned into a black box theatre. The project wouldn’t change the first floor of the College Center where the mailboxes and bookstore are located.
The project would cost $3 million and the plan, as discussed by Barnds, is “to move the theatre department out of Bergendoff to provide more space for them as well as to begin renovations for Bergendoff.
Barnds said Bergendoff “contains the original windows and ceiling when Bergendoff was first created.”
The $3 million for the plan to renovate the College Center would be paid for in parts: the first million would be raised through donations and fundraisers; the next two million would be spent from the maintenance fund the school has. This would be part of the $5 million the school puts aside every year.
SGA Senator Allan Daly approved of the plan.
“I think it’s a good use of the maintenance fund that addresses a significant issue,” Daly said.
There is no start date set for the beginning renovations, but Barnds said the renovations are planned to begin in May and demolition over the summer, with construction during the next academic year as well.
The plans to renovate Bergendoff include maintenance to overhaul the old building. Bergendoff will hold larger music classrooms, a new art gallery, a new lab for graphic design majors and a recital stage that can hold 50-60 people. Renovations will begin after the College Center renovations are completed.

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SGA discusses plans for renovations to College Center and Bergendoff