Archive for Thursday, February 18, 1993


February 18, 1993


Architectural drawings of a reconstructed Hoch Auditorium showing its original limestone facade and familiar red roof were to be presented to the Kansas Board of Regents today.

Kansas University officials this week released a slide of the rendition, which shows an outside view of the proposed south and east sides of the structure.

"I think the plan is wonderfully exciting," said Sally Frost-Mason, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and co-chair of the Hoch reconstruction committee.

According to the design, the total square feet in the building will more than double, from 71,626 to 143,036.

The drawing the regents were to review today emerged after several meetings of the committee with Dale Glenn, an architect with PKG Design Group of Lawrence who is lead architect on the project.

The reconstruction committee, comprising administrators, faculty and students, has met regularly since the beginning of the fall semester to consider various designs.

The meetings have been closed to the public, and members of the committee have been instructed by Allen Wiechert, university director of facilities planning, not to discuss possible designs publicly or with reporters.

WIECHERT, who was to present the design to the regents today, was unavailable for comment.

Glenn said the design was a culmination of 12 to 15 proposals considered by architects and the committee. He added he was happy with the design.

"It's a pretty final design, actually," he said.

Lightning sparked a fire in June 1991 that gutted Hoch.

The front facade, which survived the fire, will be unchanged. From the front of the building, a new red slate roof will appear the same as the original, KU officials said.

PKG, the lead architectural firm for the $18 million reconstruction project, expects to complete construction drawings in time for bids to be opened in early summer.

Construction will begin this summer, and occupancy of the completed building is expected in fall 1995.

THE BUILDING, which will be faced with limestone, will have a new second entrance on its east side, which will make access easier for students coming from buildings on the south slope of Mount Oread and from Wescoe Hall.

The interior will house three lecture halls one of 1,000 seats and two of 500 seats each.

Library space will occupy two levels under the service drive between Anschutz Science Library and will extend about a third of the length of Hoch beneath the auditorium level, according to the design.

The library section will have a heating and cooling system and elevator independent of the rest of the building.

A part of the library area, called the testing commons, will seat about 300 and may be used for testing or as an overflow study space for the library. The testing commons may be divided into three rooms with movable partitions, according to the design.

Funding for construction was appropriated by the Legislature from $185 million in federal funds received by the state for shortfalls in federal payments in previous years.

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