Kristen Mitchell / Campus editor
Ohio State announced Thursday Ohio’s Messer Construction will spearhead the $370 million construction and renovation of campus’ North Residential District.
The university has been engaged in a competitive review process with multiple firms since early December. OSU estimates this review process has resulted in a savings of $26 million from the original $396 million budget, lowering the North Residential renovation budget to $370 million.
“Messer is thrilled to be selected as The Ohio State University’s Design Builder for the North Residential District Transformation. We look forward to helping OSU realize President Gee’s vision by the implementation of this portion of the One Framework Plan,” said Rob Verst, vice president and general manager of Messer Construction Co., in an email.
Construction is scheduled to begin in July and is expected to be completed by Fall Semester 2016. The project’s completion date has been pushed back from its original expectation of June 2016.
The project will add 3,200 new beds to the North Residential Area, making the number of beds on North Campus total 6,359 . New dining facilities, recreation facilities and other support facilities will be added to support the university’s Second-year Transformational Experience Program, which aims to draw sophomores into living on campus for a second year.
Vert said his team was up for the job.
“Messer is an experienced higher-education builder, and together (with) our partners we have planned and delivered more than 150,000 university beds,” Verst said. “Our team’s strategic design and construction approach will support Ohio State in realizing its Second-year Transformational Experience Program while making the North Residential District a great place for students to live and learn.”
In August 2012, President E. Gordon Gee said in a release that the university, in expanding the North Residential District, is “creating another exceptional living environment, complementing work already under way in the South Residential District, incorporating the elements of student success, programmatic needs, architectural innovation and student facility interaction.”
South Campus is undergoing renovations to its high rise residence halls as part of a $170.4 million project, which is expected to be completed in the fall.