Auditoriums targeted in first phase of building upgrades

This is an auditorium in Cushwa on the campus of Youngstown State University. It will undergo major upgrades in the first phase of campus improvements coming soon.

Professor Freidrich Koknat teaches a general chemistry class in Cushwa B024, one of three auditoriums that will undergo extensive renovations as part of a plan to upgrade academic buildings on campus.

Work begins later this spring to significantly upgrade auditoriums in DeBartolo and Cushwa halls, the first phase of an effort to improve academic buildings across campus.

“Over the course of the next several months, we are embarking on a plan that will result in noticeable improvements to the living and learning environment in our academic buildings,” said Gene Grilli, vice president for Finance and Administration. “We believe these projects will further enhance the university’s commitment to academic excellence and student success.”

Two auditoriums in Cushwa Hall (Rooms B024 and B031) and an auditorium in DeBartolo Hall (Room 132) will undergo major overhauls, including new seating, wall and floor finishes, technology and audio-visual equipment and lighting.

“There has been very little work done on these auditoriums since they were constructed more than 30 years ago,” said Rich White, associate director of Planning and Construction. “We want to make improvements that will bring these facilities up to the same quality as the auditoriums in the new Williamson Hall. That is our standard at this point.”

An auditorium in Ward Beecher Hall (Room 3002) will also receive technology and cosmetic upgrades.

The work, which will begin at the end of spring semester in May and be finished by the start of fall semester in August, is part of a larger plan to improve academic spaces on campus.

In summer 2013, major upgrades are planned for the corridors, offices and other areas of DeBartolo and Cushwa halls, including carpeting, painting, ceiling, lighting and heating-ventilation-air conditioning improvements. Other buildings on campus, including Moser and Bliss halls, also could be part of the plan.

The projects are funded through a bond issue approved by the Board of Trustees.

Among the other construction projects on tap for this summer:

  • Improvements to nearly 40 small practice rooms in Bliss Hall.
  • Upgrades to two elevators in Cushwa Hall and one in Kilcawley House.
  • The final phase of improvements to the M-2 Lincoln parking deck.
  • Completion of Pollock House, which is being refurbished as the home for the university president.
  • Construction of athletics fields (soccer/softball/track) west of Fifth Avenue across from Stambaugh Stadium.


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