By Anne Rittman Hoya Staff Writer

Summer 2000 brought further changes to the Georgetown campus, as the university moved toward its goal of completing the Southwest Quadrangle construction project while also upgrading existing Georgetown facilities.

The recently begun Southwest Quadrangle Project includes plans for a new residence hall with 780 beds, a 1,200-person dining hall, a four-level underground parking facility accommodating approximately 815 vehicles and a new Jesuit living community. The project is scheduled to be completed in Fall 2003 and is expected to cost more than $120 million according to Assistant Director for Public Affairs Rabab Jafrey-Pettitt.

Also over the summer, the Prospect Street entrance to campus was modified by construction of a new gatehouse and roadway east of the old location. The transformation of the entrance is the first step in preparation for the excavation of the foundation for the Southwest Quadrangle Project, according to the facilities department.

The temporary Parking Lot T, formerly known as the Georgetown University baseball field, was completed in July and will be used to accommodate vehicles currently parking on the site of the future Southwest Quadrangle in an attempt to alleviate parking shortages.

An entrance was created at the west (Yates) end of the facility, the field was resurfaced with blacktop and new lighting was installed around the perimeter of the lot. The west end of Lot No. 3 near McDonough Gymnasium, also known as the Village C lot, was also reconfigured to accommodate additional vehicles.

The baseball team will now play its games at Shirley Povich Baseball Field in Montgomery County, Maryland. The university has negotiated a 10-year lease for use of the baseball diamond to ensure its availability for usage. Ultimately, the former GU baseball field will be the site of a building for the Graduate School of Business.

Planned improvements to Harbin Field such as permanent seating, restrooms, a concession area, equipment storage and locker rooms were preceded this summer by preliminary renovations of the irrigation system, grading and sodding.

As part of the attempt to maintain existing facilities on the campus, Harbin Hall underwent sweeping renovations this summer, as several problems caused by leaky pipes and water leaks were solved. Fire-safety sprinklers were also installed. All interior modifications were completed just before freshmen move-in, but the exterior of the building still requires work that will be performed during the school year, according to Jafrey-Pettitt.

In the Leavey Center, the bookstore began to evolve into a larger, two-story facility through the expansion of the Leavey information desk area and closing off the Leavey Esplanade. Expected to be complete by May 2001, the bookstore is being transformed into a larger facility with two escalators and an elevator. The Esplanade will be closed for the next year.

“We are enlarging the bookstore to be able to have more room for student related events,” said Associate Vice-President for Auxiliary Services Margie Bryant. “We’d like to host debates, poetry readings, singing groups, offer book signings… and just be able to do things that would entertain students and be a part of student life.”

The expanded bookstore will occupy the space currently held by Campus Ministry, which will move to the current front of the bookstore, offering a glass front and higher visibility in the Leavey Center. The expanded bookstore will also occupy 8,000 square feet of the esplanade, but will bring music and other benefits to the outdoor area, according to Bryant.

In additional preparation for the Southwest Quadrant Project, underground utilities were relocated and an east-west roadway through the parking lot region was completed in August.

The Southwest Quadrangle Project is “part of an ongoing effort to strengthen and enhance student life on Georgetown University’s campus. By providing additional housing as well as space for academic, studying, co-curricular and social activities the University hopes to build on its tradition of providing a dynamic living community for its diverse student body,” according to a press release.

The Southwest Quadrangle will also pave the way for undergraduate enrollment growth. University Provost Dorothy Brown announced in October that enrollment must grow to cover some of the costs of constructing new buildings. Updating future enrollment figures this summer, Brown said, “As a result of subsequent discussions with members of the community and others, we are asking the BZA [Board of Zoning Adjustment] to approve an increase of 389 additional undergraduate students to our current enrollment cap.”

The 10-year plan and its goal of campus renewal follows the 1999 and 2000 Reports on Student Life, which called for additional student space to supplement the present space available for student groups in the Leavey Center. The Southwest Quadrangle will include spaces for classes, meetings, recreation, co-curricular activities, studying and seminars, plus green space “for recreation and relaxation,” according to the press release. The planned expansion would allow for more student space in New South and the current Jesuit Residence

Funding for the project in part will come from donors to the university through the Third Century Campaign, which is scheduled to raise $750 million. “Our goal is $50 million towards the project,” said Director of Development for Special Projects Mary Prahinski (CAS ’85). “As of [Wednesday, Aug. 23], we were halfway to that goal.” The university has received several gifts over the last year toward the Southwest Quadrant Project from alumni, parents and foundations, with “quite a few multi-million dollar gifts. [The donors] are really helping to make this dream a reality,” Prahinski said. “The [Southwest Quadrangle] will be a wonderful place for students to live.”

The Southwest Quadrangle Project is described as “the most ambitious construction project the university has undertaken since the Leavey Center in the late 1980s,” and is “the centerpiece for the development of the 21st century Georgetown campus,” according to the press release. The project will raise the amount of people who can live in on-campus housing to 90 percent, continuing Georgetown’s record of providing the most on-campus housing in the D.C. area, with the exception of Gallaudet University.

The Southwest Quadrangle Project is the first step in completing several of Georgetown’s construction goals, which include a 350-seat theater in the MBNA Performing Arts Center to be housed in the current Ryan Administration Building, a science center and the Georgetown School of Business building.

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