New Office of International Affairs, Commuter Lounge, Oak Summit Renovations Highlight Campus Improvements

By Christopher Sarachilli | September 10, 2015

Some offices and spaces around Arcadia’s Glenside campus have undergone renovations and refurbishments over the past few months.

Throughout the summer, the Facilities Management and Capital Planning team implemented a host of improvements ranging from increased accessibility to updated technology to a new hub for the Office of International Affairs (OIA). The upgrades will continue into the fall with a renovated Commuter Lounge and other improvements.

OIA and the English Language Institute (ELI) now are located at 6 Royal Avenue, across from Oak Summit at the intersection of Royal Ave. and Easton Road. The new location features classrooms, offices, and common space for students, faculty, and staff. A fountain on the first floor, deck on the second, and marble staircase climbing through the building ensure that the new OIA and ELI will be a more elegant, welcoming space for students preparing to go abroad—and for those adjusting to life in the United States.

Oak Summit also has seen changes, with 15 renovated apartments, 12 converted into student housing (with new furnishing), 18 repaired balconies, and additional storage space added to C building. These redone apartments feature more open floor plans, updated bathroom fixtures, and redone flooring. Hallways have been repainted and outfitted with better lighting “to bring attention to how cool the building is,” said Bre Donnelly, associate director for Residence and Commuter Life. With a plan to renovate more rooms each year and the newly added apartments, bringing the total number of student spaces up to 695 from 628 last year, living in Oak Summit remains an enticing alternative to off-campus housing, Donnelly said.

The new Commuter Lounge is located in the same location in Heinz Hall but now spans the entire floor. The former commuter lounge has expanded into the next room, offering a larger space for commuter students to hang out and relax, complete with updated flooring, microwaves, and counter space. The new Lounge also provides more lockers and a study room outfitted with tables and whiteboards.

Other major campus improvements include:

Twenty-two classrooms around campus—in Boyer, Brubaker, Murphy, and Taylor Halls, as well as in Landman Library—have been outfitted with new chairs, tables, paint, technology, flooring, and/or other improvements.

Elevators have been installed in Dilworth, Kistler, and Thomas Halls in order to improve accessibility. This follows the addition of the Castle elevator at the end of the spring 2015 semester, giving Arcadia unprecedented ease of mobility for those with disability.

The Community and Civic Engagement Center (formerly the Office of Community Service) has moved from the basement of Dilworth Hall to 2005 Church Road (across the street from Knight Hall).

In addition, the University has increased the amount of public safety offices on campus; created additional counseling spacing in the Wellness Center; refinished the floor of Kuch Center Alumni Gymnasium; and installed new fencing along Easton Field.