Archive for Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Plan to raze McCollum Hall in the works

The Daisy Hill skyline could change if the Kansas Board of Regents approves a request from Kansas University to demolish McCollum Hall. Two new residence halls and a parking lot would be built on Daisy Hill as part of the project, which would cost $48.7 million.

The Daisy Hill skyline could change if the Kansas Board of Regents approves a request from Kansas University to demolish McCollum Hall. Two new residence halls and a parking lot would be built on Daisy Hill as part of the project, which would cost $48.7 million.

October 10, 2012


— A major part of the Daisy Hill skyline will meet the wrecking ball under a plan sought by Kansas University.

KU wants to raze the 10-story McCollum Hall and replace it with two new residence halls, according to a request before the Kansas Board of Regents. The cost of the total project would be $48.7 million and funded with bonds that would be paid off with housing and parking system revenues.

The board will consider the request next week. Jill Jess, a spokeswoman for KU, said until the regents consider the request, she couldn't divulge any more information than the written information that was provided to the board.

The project is before the regents as "an amendment of fiscal year 2014 capital improvement request." Fiscal year 2014 starts July 1, 2013.

There are five residence halls on Daisy Hill, housing more than 2,400 students. McCollum has a capacity for 910 students.

On Daisy Hill, "All of the residence halls have been renovated recently with the exception of McCollum," the information provided to the regents said.

"Even though McCollum has been well-maintained over the years, the space needs for the new housing model do not fit efficiently within the form of the building so renovation is not an option," the memo said.

The two new residence halls will be built west of Hashinger Hall and west of Lewis Hall. Each would be five stories and house 350 students.

"When the two halls are complete, McCollum Hall will be razed and the site converted to parking," the memo said.


imastinker 1 year, 6 months ago

What a crock.... I lived there in 2004 for a semester. I still remember being ripped off by the housing center for $700. I needed that money.

I remember that dorm as being dated but nice. I have some fond memories there. For the life of me I can't think of how some general paint/lighting and maybe new doors would not be enough to make the place look more modern. I also don't understand why they have to raze McCollum when there is a lot of space down by oliver for new res halls.

For those that don't remember, res halls are no big bargain. They close for every holiday so that you have to travel home or find other accomodations, don't serve breakfast on saturday or Sundays, aren't open during the summer, required expensive internet plans, required parking passes, and so on. I found living just off campus to be much cheaper.


StirrrThePot 1 year, 6 months ago

All of Daisy Hill was archaic and outdated when I was in the mid-90s. My mother remarked when she and my dad brought me to campus was that the inside of Lewis hall looked exactly like it did when she was there in 1968.

The year after I graduated the renovations began. LOL


valgrlku 1 year, 6 months ago

For those of you who haven't kept up to date on the costs of living in said dorms:

Remodeled or not, those rates are pretty steep, considering how few months/days people are permitted to live there, I think, especially McCollum which is the "cheap" dorm, as previously mentioned.

Wasn't there an article in the paper (UDK or here?) about the terrible living conditions in Stouffer Place? Those rates are cheap but still too much for the conditions I read about in that piece.


Cant_have_it_both_ways 1 year, 6 months ago

Or they could save the money, reduce property taxes on those of us who actually pay income tax.


lawrencian 1 year, 6 months ago

Pretty sure the parking dollars are only going to pay for the cost of replacing the parking that will be taken up with the new buildings -- there is a state law about that, too. Parking dollars can't go in the general education fund.


KU79 1 year, 6 months ago

I was an RA in McCollum in '78 and '79, and I always thought it was too big. Just too many humans under one roof. As an RA it was hard to get to know many of the residents on the 3 wings. Surprised they're tearing it down, though. All things considered I suppose this is more cost effective than renovating the beast. Btw, Fourth Floor, aka "the crazy mole people."


SofaKing 1 year, 6 months ago

In other news, a stray screen door held up traffic on Barker for 4 minutes Thursday morning.


JJE007 1 year, 6 months ago

I spent many a bizarre hour in McCollum Hall. Those memories will exist beyond its destruction. I'd like my last memory of the place to be watching it crumple to the ground at the sound of many well-placed explosive charges! It sounds like a party. Set up bleachers! Sell tickets! Make the video available for a fee!-D


joes_donuts 1 year, 6 months ago

Nice thing about razing McCollum is it will not have to go in front of Lawrence HRC. The State has the same agency, and since it is a state run campus, they will have the final (logical) say.

We all know if it were going in front of the Lawrence HRC, they would find some Historical mouse dropping that would delay the demolition.


Richard Heckler 1 year, 6 months ago

When politicians say Kansas is broke I say they are lying. Absolutely! It all depends on how the Brownback facists want to blow OUR MONEY.

For example.

Last year, Kansas used workers' withholding taxes to bribe AMC Entertainment with a $47 million payment to move its headquarters from downtown Kansas City, Missouri, to a KC suburb on the Kansas side, just 10 miles away. What a ripoff! Among the 2,700 corporations cashing in on such absurd diversions of state taxes from public need to private greed are Goldman Sachs, GE, Motorola, and Procter & Gamble.

For more information – and for ways you can help stop this despicable giveaway – get the full report, entitled "Paying Taxes to the Boss." It's available at


Bob Forer 1 year, 6 months ago

It been over thirty years since I was a KU student and resided at Ellsworth, so I have no idea what the upgrades to the other Daisy Hill dorms have been, but I can't imagine that they have all been remodeled to contemporary standards.

In tight times, it doesn't make sense for a perfectly functional building to be razed. It doesn't matter that the money is coming from parking revenue. That parking revenue money could be used for education purposes. If McCollum is badly out of sync with the other dorms, then lower the price. There are many students who would jump at the change to save a little money. They just need a place to sleep and study. The important time they spend during college is in the classroom, and that's where the money should be spent.

Ridiculous idea.


straightforward 1 year, 6 months ago

Away = a way. Sorry, typing on an iPhone.


straightforward 1 year, 6 months ago

I can see it now - Doug Compton Hall. Might as well. It seems like he already owns all the off-campus living. I'm sure he can find away to make money off this project too.


oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 6 months ago

Needed: 200 occupants for the new Varsity House Apartments.

Consider this: KU can tear down a building, build two new residence halls complete with all kinds of facilities, bathrooms HVAC and more and only for 48 million and the City of Lawrence can barely remodel a current library and parking for the same amount. KU can pay using parking revenue. The City of Lawrence gives parking away.

Wanna bet some one is going to give some money toward the new buildings so their name is on one of them or maybe even both.


Paul Geisler 1 year, 6 months ago

The demand for on-campus living has steadily dropped over many years which is why the KU dorms that have been remodeled had the old small dorm rooms doubled-up to provide a suite with a sleeping room and a study/living room combined into a single living space. Obviously that also greatly reducing the number of dorm rooms available, but I haven't heard anyone complaining about that.

Further more, McCollum Hall is too big and too outdated to justify spending millions of dollars to renovate it with new technology, wiring, HVAC, etc. And the basement of McCollum also houses some of KU's technical infrastructure & other departmental staff, so the need to update it is about more than just what students need in their dorm rooms.


none2 1 year, 6 months ago

Well it is good to know that KU is rolling in dough to do such projects.

Remember projects like this the next time the right wing wants to cut funding for higher education. This just feeds into their opinions.


bookemdano 1 year, 6 months ago

(sniff) That dump was my first home in Lawrence. I need to make sure I go see my old room before the wrecking ball does.

Note, I don't disagree with the notion that McCollum isn't worth saving. Just sentimental about my old college days.


hometownhawk 1 year, 6 months ago

formerfarmer, you're assuming that they're at 100% capacity in the residence halls. More likely, they're far below it and hoping that newer / nicer accommodations will attract more students to on-campus housing.


alcoholbliss 1 year, 6 months ago

Hopefully Oliver Hall is next? Or will they have to build new over McCollum parking lot or hopefully cockroach infested Stouffer Place?

Wait until construction crews take away 2 parking lots to build two new dorms in them while McCollum still stands. Oh thats right, I bet they expect their tenants to park clear down at Clinton Parkway and Iowa and have their property broken into on a regular basis.


formerfarmer 1 year, 6 months ago

Let’s raze a building that holds 910 students and replace it with 2 buildings that hold 700. Are they purposely forcing 210 students to seek off campus housing or going to build a third building elsewhere.


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