Board of Trustees appoints designer for residence hall at Penn State Behrend

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State’s Board of Trustees on Friday (Nov. 20) appointed a design firm for a 250-bed residence hall at Penn State Erie, The Behrend College. The building, which would be located near Ohio Hall, at the southwest corner of the campus, is scheduled to open at the start of the fall 2018 semester.

The trustees awarded a design-build contract to Turner Construction of Pittsburgh, Pa., to develop the 65,000-square-foot building. The design-build approach streamlines the construction process by involving both the architect and the builder as a team from the start of the project. Construction could begin in spring 2017.

The building will continue a tradition at Penn State Behrend, where all on-campus student residences are named for ships or captains that participated in the Battle of Lake Erie. It will be called Trippe Hall, honoring a one-gun sloop that fought a long-range duel with the British ships Lady Prevost and Little Belt.

The building will feature a cluster of individual bathrooms at the center of each floor. That design, modeled on the South Halls complex at Penn State’s University Park campus, provides additional privacy.

“It goes beyond the traditional residence hall in terms of privacy and convenience,” said Mike Lindner, director of Housing and Food Services at the college. “When you’re in that restroom, it’s your space.”

A portion of Trippe Hall will be designated for use by students in the Black School of Business. The building’s common areas will include space for entrepreneurial and collaborative student projects.

“We want to create a living-learning environment where students from the Black School who have an interest in international travel can come together,” said Ken Miller, senior director of campus planning and student affairs. “When students of different cultures engage with one another on a day-to-day basis, they are far better prepared to work in integrated global settings.”

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Last Updated November 20, 2015