You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Tue, Jul 19, 2011 : 11:09 a.m.

University of Michigan plans $116 million renovation to East Quad dormitory

By Kyle Feldscher

This story has been updated University of Michigan students could be living and studying in an updated version East Quadrangle if the university’s Board of Regents approve a $116 million renovation project Thursday.

At about 300,000 square feet, the dorm houses about 860 students.

The $116 million cost of the project will be provided from Housing resources, the College of Literature, Science and the Arts resources and investment proceeds.

Renovations would include new plumbing, heating, cooling, ventilation, fire detection and suppression systems. Other improvements would include wired and wireless high-speed network access, renovated bath facilities and improvements to accessibility.

The action request was submitted to regents by Royster Harper, vice president for student affairs, and Timothy Slottow, executive vice president.

The design process will begin after regents vote on the project. The project is not scheduled. Regents will be presented with a timetable when university officials seek approval of the designs.

Architectural firm Integrated Design Solutions LLC will be in charge of designing the project.

The project will also renovate the Residential College to current academic standards. The action request notes that since the college’s inception in 1967, spaces have been used within East Quadrangle for classrooms that were not originally intended for academic study. The request said offices and administrative functions have been housed in former bedrooms and most classrooms are located in the basement.

East Quadrangle was originally constructed in 1940 and had additions built in 1948 and 1969. The university does not anticipate any impact on parking for this project.

Peter Logan, spokesperson for University Housing, said the renovations will require East Quadrangle to be closed for a period of one year to 15 months. Logan said all of the university's deep renovations to residence halls have resulted in the buildings needing to be closed.

"At this point we don’t know exactly when the renovation would take place, if approved," Logan said, "because we’re going to wait to see the scope of the work when the schematic design is submitted to the regents."

The renovations to East Quadrangle will be another major step in the university's plan to update residential buildings on campus.

The university opened the North Quadrangle Residential and Academic Complex in August 2010 after a three-year project that cost the university $175 million.

Kyle Feldscher covers K-12 education for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:26 p.m.

$116 million for 860 students - that's about $135,000 a student! Not satisfied with having the biggest stadium in the country, the U of M are now working on having the biggest and best dorms in the nation. And I love the way they deflect any questioning of this project by saying it has yet to be approved by the Regents. If that's really the case how is it that a design company is already attached to the project? And most of the article is reflects that this dorm renovation is already a fait accompli? Not to beat a dead horse, but all this money on a dorm but the U of M can't give staff and lower level faculty a decent raise, while the upper crust of the university have ridiculously high salaries and raises.

Michael Cohen

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:03 p.m.

The last major work was apparently in 1969, 42 years ago. If this project lasts,say, 30 years, it's more like $4,000 per student per year, and that is without taking into account the work that will be done on the classrooms and administrative space of the Residential College, which brings in tuition as well as housing payments. I also think salaries are important. But the Residential College attracts some of the UM's best students, who mostly pay out-of-state tuition, and then live and work in what has become some of the University's worst space. The tuition is what pays the largest part of the salaries. The declining payments from the State of Michigan now don't even cover the tuition discount for in-state students.


Tue, Jul 19, 2011 : 9:09 p.m.

And fire services are not a "free ride" for UM by any stretch of the imagination. Every time AAFD is called to campus, UM receives a bill - and it's not small. That's why they have campus police responding first whenever a fire alarm is pulled, because it's most likely a prank and they don't want to be stuck with a bill for the fire truck.


Tue, Jul 19, 2011 : 8:56 p.m.

Study how much revenue that UM brings in to Ann Arbor. I am quite certain that it far exceeds the costs associated with AAFD serving UM's fire calls.


Tue, Jul 19, 2011 : 7:12 p.m.

Well, if we want to keep beating dead horses: "UM should hire more cops for AA! Hire more firemen! Let the students carry firearms! Legalize drugs! Ban smoking!" And it goes on.... In reality, this had to be done and it is good they are investing monies and keeping the construction industry going.


Tue, Jul 19, 2011 : 7:28 p.m.

In reality, no one says the U should hire more police, they have their own force. I think the citizenry is more with the fact that the U free rides off of the city fd. It is not beating a dead horse, because the administration refuses to make it an issue. If the admin made it an issue and lost (which they would not) then maybe, just maybe, would it be beating a dead horse.


Tue, Jul 19, 2011 : 5:14 p.m.

They should put in a fire station. . .


Tue, Jul 19, 2011 : 4:46 p.m.

Nice to have that kind of dough. I hope they focus on Michigan companies to do the work.