2009 Sees King Hall’s East Wing Take Shape
The King Hall Expansion and Renovation project made swift progress during 2009, as work on the Law School building's new east wing progressed from the laying of the new structure's foundation early in the year through a "topping off" ceremony celebrating the completion of the building's steel frame in May, then a busy summer and fall that saw the exterior walls take shape.
By year's end, the new structure was more than 50 percent completed and fully weatherized, and the Dean's Office was working with campus architects, engineers, and contractors to finalize plans for the renovation phase, which is set to begin immediately after the Law School takes occupancy of the new wing in May 2010.
The progress was all the more remarkable given that, from late January through March, construction paused as California's fiscal crisis forced a freeze in funding for state-funded capital projects. Recognizing the importance of keeping the project on schedule, the Law School and the UC Davis Office of Resource Management, with the strong support of UC Davis Provost Enrique Lavernia, worked to reach an agreement that allowed work to resume after just a few weeks' hiatus.
"We are deeply indebted to Chancellor Larry Vanderhoef, Provost Enrique Lavernia, and Vice Chancellor of Resource Management & Planning John Meyer for their enduring support and for making the King Hall Expansion and Renovation project the very top campus priority," said Dean Kevin R. Johnson. "Their advocacy on King Hall's behalf carried the day! We are also grateful to Senior Assistant Dean Adam Talley, whose crucial role throughout cannot be overstated."
In June, the King Hall community got more good news, as the UC Office of the President acted to allocate the remaining state general funds needed for the project. Now, with state funding secure, the Law School is working to raise an additional $2.7 million toward its $8 million campaign goal in order to fully realize the potential of the renovation phase.
As the year drew to a close, the Law School marked the achievement of the first set of goals of the Mabie Challenge. Successful completion of the first phase of the Challenge, which included fundraising as well as student and faculty participation goals, resulted in the William and Inez Mabie Foundation's pledge of an additional $400,000, and the Law School is working to reach alumni participation goals that will result in the commitment of an additional $100,000.
Meanwhile, planning is underway for the renovation phase, which will expand and consolidate student organization and journal offices in the basement, add a dozen group study rooms, create two new reading rooms and a reading lounge, provide two elevators, remodel existing bathrooms, and modernize the upstairs classrooms. The renovation is expected to take 18 months, divided into three approximately equal phases: The first six months renovating the basement, the second six months the second floor, and the final six months the first floor.
When complete, the King Hall Expansion and Renovation project will provide the King Hall community with an additional 18,000 assignable square feet, as well as a new entryway and façade befitting a world-class law school. The east wing will be home to the new Kalmanovitz Appellate Moot Courtroom, and the renovated King Hall structure will include an expanded Mabie Law Library and feature improved traffic flow and aesthetics, new reading rooms, group study areas, and enhanced student organization spaces. When the project is complete, the School of Law will enjoy an aesthetically striking and functionally state-of-the-art facility that will accommodate the latest technology and teaching techniques and provide tremendous flexibility as the Law School continues to develop well into the future.
"We're very grateful to everyone who has supported the building project over the course of the past year, and we want to encourage our friends and alumni to help make 2010 equally successful as we work to take advantage of this once-in-a-generation opportunity to expand and renovate the Law School building," said Dean Johnson.
King Hall Construction Chronicles blog