Posted on Apr 30, 2018
in Campus News and News
Another step in the evolution of the Central District at the University of Kansas is now complete. On the site of the old Burge Union, which opened in 1979, sits a brand-new building: a new Burge that can host events of any size and adds accommodations that make KU a more welcoming, inclusive campus.
“The big goal was to have a flexible conference space,” said JJ O’Toole-Curran, senior associate director at KU Memorial Union. “Student Senate wanted to have offices for student services, and the union wanted a flexible conference space with a large kitchen downstairs to serve as the catering hub for this side of campus.”
Departments such as the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity, Legal Services for Students and the Sexual Assault Prevention and Education Center all received offices in the new building.
The focus on inclusivity continued with the additions of a lactation room and a Wudu/Ablution room. Reflection rooms for meditation or prayer by students of all faiths are also available.
“These facilities were important to Student Senate to make our campus more accessible for our students,” said Sharon Leatherman, assistant director of building and event services. “Very few unions have everything we have here.”
The Forum, with a Skyfold wall down.
The Burge Union’s central room is the Forum, the largest single-function room in Lawrence with over 10,800 square feet. For comparison, the Kansas Union ballroom is 7,000 square feet.
The room can be divided into four separate rooms with Skyfold soundproof walls that unfold from the ceiling. Student groups can reserve facilities for free, with reduced rates available for staff and faculty.
A Roasterie Coffee and Hawk Shop convenience store sells grab-and-go food for students.
A seating area in the main entrance offers a view of Allen Fieldhouse.
A “Quiet Zone,” where students can study in total silence.
Study pods, recently added in the Kansas Union as well, line the windows in a hallway.
If you’re feeling nostalgic for the old Burge, read our coverage from the decommissioning ceremony and a social recap of the day the demolition began.
The rapid growth and expansion of KU’s Lawrence campus continues with the new Earth, Energy and Environment Center, which opened earlier this semester. The EEEC features modern labs, classrooms and study spaces for the next generations of Jayhawk students.
The new construction also brings the campus closer together, as students can now walk from the engineering buildings to Jayhawk Boulevard without going outside, thanks to a skybridge over Naismith Drive. From the entrance to Learned Engineering Expansion Phase 2 to Lindley Hall, we took a walk through the path to see for ourselves.
And if you haven’t been on campus recently and are completely turned around, here’s where our path took us:
The new Earth, Energy and Environment Center opened for the 2018 spring semester. Find more coverage of the building here.
Construction on the KU campus continues to roll along as the new school year approaches.
Repairs along Memorial Drive, along with new construction along Naismith Drive on the Earth, Energy and Environment Center building and the Central District development have kept crews busy and traffic redirected around campus all summer.
Check out our photos below to see this week’s progress. A time-lapse construction cam view of the Central District project is also available online.
Fall classes begin Monday, August 22.
It’s summer in Lawrence, and that means construction projects galore both around town and on campus.
One big difference this summer: the Jayhawk Boulevard traffic gates are open. Typically, traffic is restricted on the street while classes are in session. For a look at all current road closures due to construction, click here.
Watch our slideshow below to see pictures of current construction, or click here to view the photos on Flickr.