Cheney Free Press -

By Kelsey Lavelle
Staff Intern 

Patterson Hall remodel near completion

Building to reopen winter quarter


Kelsey Lavelle

The outside of Patterson Hall is nearly finished. The building has been under contruction since 2010.

Only interior details and outdoor aesthetics are left for the Eastern Washington University remodel project that is in its third year of construction.

Finally professors, students and administrators can see the goal line, the long awaited reopening of Patterson Hall will come just in time for winter quarter.

"It sure looks good," Jim Moeller, senior project manager for Eastern Washington University said during a walkthrough of the building.

Material and labor shortages, broken tiles, and temperatures well below freezing were all setbacks to the project that has been under construction since April 2010.

Technologically, Patterson will be highly advanced.

In 45 newly remodeled spaces, students and staff will encounter "multimedia classrooms" complete with DVD players, overhead projectors, moveable whiteboards and integrated sounds systems.

Some classrooms were upgraded with desks that raise and lower installed computers. This will allow for a lecture room to double as a computer lab classroom.

Moeller emphasized the advantages of the upgraded technology, "Instructors will use lapel [microphones]" to be heard throughout the classroom.

New ventilation and air control grills have been installed, this system will be running constantly without the disadvantage of disrupting lectures.

Staff members who are currently displaced in temporary offices throughout Tawanka, Hargraves halls, as well as the former Robert Reid Lab School, will have 160 permanent offices to choose from and an additional 20 workspaces for adjunct professors, administrative workers and other positions that will be within the building.

Moeller expects administrative staff to begin moving in before the first of the New Year and professors before classes begin Jan. 6.

For the nine academic departments moving into Patterson, Moeller consulted as many "stakeholders" for their input for the most effective and efficient spaces.

These stakeholders ranged from students and faculty to maintenance and janitorial staff.

Moeller believes his input was necessary to "provide as many needs as possible to as many stakeholders as possible."

Moeller recalled the remodel of the Hargraves building in which the opinions of 38 employees who were slated to move in at that project's completion, due to staffing changes only four of those employees actually moved in.

That situation was avoided again when a "one-size-fits-all" approach to office spaces.

The modifications to Patterson were not all academic; bathrooms will be touch-less and paperless using electronic water and soap dispersers and Dyson blade hand dryers.

At completion, the Patterson Hall remodel will be a LEED silver certified green building.

There will be a ribbon cutting ceremony at the northwest corner on Jan. 7 at 1:45 p.m. with a presentation and reception to follow.

Kelsey Lavelle can be reached at

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