Indiana University Kokomo selected Moake Park Group Inc. as the architects to renovate its oldest campus building.
Laura Lucas, assistant architect for research in the University Architect’s Office, said the Fort Wayne-based firm was chosen from among five finalists for the job to upgrade the Main Building.
“They showed us what they could do for us to transform underutilized spaces to the way higher education works today and to prepare it for how it will work in the future,” Lucas said in a press release. “The classrooms will fit better for how we are teaching and how we are going to teach, as opposed to how we used to teach.”
Planners expect the project to be completed by fall 2015. Work should start this summer, Lucas said, adding the biggest challenge is “keeping the building operational while transforming it.”
While much of the $14 million project is upgrading infrastructure, such as the heating and cooling system, there will be visible changes as well.
“From the outside, we want it to represent the new direction of IU Kokomo becoming a 21st century campus,” said Interim Chancellor Susan Sciame-Giesecke. “This project ensures that the Main Building will support our continued growth, and prepare us to meet the needs of our students well into the future. We are excited to move forward.”
The Indiana General Assembly approved $14 million for the project in 2013. Sciame-Giesecke expressed appreciation for local legislators’ support.
The work will be the first major renovation in nearly two decades for the building, which was built in 1965. It was the first building on the South Washington Street campus when IU Kokomo moved from the Seiberling Mansion.