West Hartford, CT The University of Hartford began construction in February on the renovation of its Gengras Student Union (GSU). The architect-led design-build project is designed by The S/L/A/M Collaborative (SLAM) as part of the university’s long-term campus master plan with S/L/A/M Construction Services (SLAM CS) serving as the construction manager.
Set to open this fall, the $5 million, 3,000 s/f addition and 82,260 s/f student center renovation project includes expansion and improvements to the gathering and recreational spaces, common areas, dining space, offices, and meeting rooms. The student union will transform the current patio into a new community space for students, faculty, and staff while providing a cohesive front to student life services. The former Suisman Lounge area will serve as the new Career Services Center and new gathering spaces will inspire collaboration and encourage students to participate in student organizations and activities. The commuter student lounge will also undergo a renovation and expansion.
The scope of the project will refresh the image and feel of GSU while incorporating the university’s brand and colors. Elements will include flexible furniture including movable chairs, bar stools, and high-top tables in the Suisman Lounge and café areas. Sustainable elements include LED lighting, new energy-efficient air handlers, electrical upgrades to meet modern needs, and reuse of the building’s existing footprint reducing the size of the addition and its impact on campus open space. A new patio space for students, faculty, and staff will be constructed outside the main entrance to further enhance the campus greenspace.
“We’re excited to continue our long relationship with the University, helping them provide a world-class community and gathering space for their students,” said Eugene Torone, president of S/L/A/M Construction Services. “We’re looking forward to working with the University to deliver this wonderful addition to the campus in October for the 2017-18 academic year.”