Construction Updates

Fencing and Exit Paths (1/13/2021)

The fencing contractor is on campus this week and the fence outside the Basic Science Building will go up. The south entrance (facing the horseshoe) will be closed to pedestrian traffic within the next week or two. The east entrance off Ashley Avenue will be accessible. An exit door will be temporarily added to the west side of the building. You may refer to the diagram below for specific pathways. The bridge between the library and BSB will close the week of January 25.

BSB Exit Paths during Construction

Student Study Space (1/4/2021)

The library is temporarily relocating to the University Hospital Extension (the old Children’s Hospital) for the duration of the renovation project. The first phase of the library’s four phase relocation plan began on December 18, 2020, with moving the 3rd and 4th floor student study spaces to the atrium on the 7th floor of the hospital extension. To minimize noise disruptions to students, the 3rd and 4th floors of the Colbert Education Center and Library Building are now closed for student study, effective January 4, 2021. The 1st and 2nd floors of the library will remain open until April 1, 2021. We anticipate opening an additional study space on the 8th floor of the hopsital extension later this spring. Details will be shared at a later date.

Students needing to borrow technology from the library will do so by visiting their temporary home in the atrium on the 7th floor of the hospital extension. 

Timeline (11/5/2020)

***Please note that these dates are estimates and are subject to change.

We are currently projecting that fencing will go up around the project site in December. Additionally, the bridge from the library to the Basic Science Building, the BSB south entrance (main entrance off the horseshoe), and the sidewalk long the south side of BSB will be closed in December. The east entrance of BSB near Ashley Avenue will remain open and the horseshoe will remain accessible. Between December 2020 and April 2021, the site will be prepped. During that time, you can expect to hear trucks and excavating equipment, diesel motors, generators, and pumps, but most work should not cause a lot of noise or vibration within BSB. Pile driving, demolition, and major construction will begin in May 2021. The contractor has designed the schedule for the noisiest work to occur between May and August 2021. At this time, we anticipate the Colbert Library and BSB classrooms/auditorium being completed by March 2022, and the College of Pharmacy being completed in July 2022.

Below are illustrations of the site fencing, BSB exit paths, and sidewalk access between December and the end of the project. All files are in PDF format.

Decision (6/18/2020)

Construction will start May 2021. Site work and utilities will begin earlier so that building construction can commence on or about May 1. Groups that need to be relocated for the duration of the project will move in late fall or spring before construction begins. A timeline for the transition is under development.

New Start (5/8/2020)

A final decision about when to re-start construction has not yet been made; however, we do know that we cannot begin until January 2021 at the earliest. Some units may begin moving to temporary locations sooner than January so that construction can start on time. Leadership will be meeting again mid-June to determine the status of the project. We will continue to post updates here.

Delay Update (4/2/2020)

With timeline considerations and financial implications in mind, it was determined that it is best not to split the construction project but rather to delay it in its entirety. The provost has solicited feedback from key stakeholders about a potential new start date - August/September 2020, January, 2021, or May 2021. We hope to come to a decision soon.

Delay (3/20/2020)

Due to the impacts of COVID-19, the library renovation slated to begin June 1, 2020 will be delayed until further notice. We are unable to use the 7th and 8th floors of the old Children’s Hospital for temporary relocations as these spaces will be used for overflow COVID-19 patient units. We are unsure how long the units will be in use for this purpose and we have no alternative space on campus to house dislocated groups. We know this is disappointing as we were all looking forward to getting work started. We are currently exploring options to determine whether it is feasible to move forward with the BSB classroom renovations as well as the construction of the new College of Pharmacy building and just delay the Colbert Library renovations. As soon as we have additional information, we will share it.

Project Description

The project has 3 components:

  1. A two-story addition will be constructed along the south side of the Basic Science Building (facing the horseshoe) to create a new College of Pharmacy.
  2. Interior renovations to the Basic Science Building
    BSB 100, 202, 302, 402, 502 - auditorium and classrooms
    BSB 103 - archives space
  3. Interior renovations to the Colbert Education Center and Library
    Relocation of sim center from College of Nursing to Library
    Revamp of student lounge and study spaces

Temporary Office Locations

The library must be vacated during construction. Below is a summary of where you will be able to find support services during construction:

  • Library computer lab: 6th floor, University Hospital Extension
  • Library offices: 6th floor, University Hospital Extension
  • Center for Academic Excellence: 6th floor, University Hospital Extension
  • Open study space for all students: 7th floor, University Hospital Extension
  • CCET: 7th floor, University Hospital Extension
  • Study space for College of Medicine students: 8th floor, University Hospital Extension
  • Study rooms for all students: 8th floor, University Hospital Extension
  • Innovation Station: 1st floor, 135 Cannon 


Please contact Juli Wilt at