The Changing Face of Campus

This is an exciting time of transition at BYU–Idaho. With an increase in student enrollment, coupled with new baccalaureate programs, the face of the campus is changing. New construction is expanding to meet the needs of today’s modern university students, while existing buildings and grounds stand as reminders of those who previously paved the way. The past and the present blend together to make BYU–Idaho what it is becoming.
The Gordon B. Hinckley Building was completed as the 2002 fall semester began and later dedicated on October 22. The building is widely used for both academic and ecclesiastical purposes. It includes 15 classrooms, 25 faculty offices, a chapel, a large multi-use area, and a cultural hall. The cultural hall can be divided in half, providing two additional spaces for social events. A double serving kitchen is adjacent to the cultural hall.
The third floor of the Smith Building faced changes of its own during the third summer of a four-year renovation project. Workers have been removing asbestos and adding duct work to handle a new air system on the third floor. A steam condensate line running along the east side of the Smith Building has also been replaced and relandscaping completed.
Approximately 9,700 square feet of space will be added to the southeast corner of the Austin Building. Renovations and remodeling will also be made to the first floor. When complete, this project will add more space for three computer labs, two classrooms, and nine additional faculty offices. Completion of the addition is planned for late summer 2003. Remodeling of the second floor was completed in September 2002 adding four classrooms, five labs, and ten faculty offices.
The Hart Auditorium is closed while workers install a new air-conditioning system. Duct work, catwalks and an emergency sprinkling system will also be added. Existing worn-out sound and lighting equipment are being replaced with updated systems. Due to construction, devotionals temporarily originate from the Taylor Chapel and are broadcast to over 20 overflow locations across campus. Plans have also been announced to evaluate major additions to the Hart Building, Snow Center for the performing Arts, and Manwaring Center.
Part of the lower level of the Hart Building is being transformed into the Hart Fitness Center. Exercise equipment has been purchased and temporarily placed in the Hart foyer. It will be moved to the fitness area when construction is complete. In addition, there will be rooms for weight lifting, aerobics, and other activities included in the new Activities Program. (Not pictured.)
The Spori Building continues to progress and is expected to be complete in May 2003. The new 44,000-square-foot structure clearly resembles the original building and is being constructed on the same site. Additionally, some stone and woodwork elements from the original structure were preserved and will be used in the interior of the new building. The Art Department and Communication Department will be housed in the Spori, as well as an art gallery on the main floor.
The 25,000-square-foot Benson Building addition will be under way shortly—including a 15,000-square-foot replacement of existing greenhouses. Expanded laboratory facilities, offices and classrooms will be added. Biology will be the primary department to use the addition. Completion of the Benson Building is planned for January 2004.
Planning for the new Student Health Center has begun with geotechnical site investigation at the planned location. Upon approval, construction will begin on the southeast side of campus near the Hinckley Building. Medical services will be provided on the first floor with the second floor housing the Counseling Center. The current Health Center, located in the Clarke Building, will then be renovated into classrooms and offices. Completion of the Student Health Center is expected by late 2003 or early 2004.
BYU–Idaho plans to build 156 married student housing units at Seventh South and Second West in Rexburg. Seventy of the units should be ready for occupancy during fall semester 2003.
Total student enrollment for fall semester 2002 is approximately 10,700. 2530 new freshmen and 1136 seniors are currently enrolled. Thirty new faculty members were hired, bringing the total number of faculty to 480. Approximately 25 baccalaureate programs have been introduced since September 2001.