EMU Renovations: Union remodel stirs reaction

Erb Memorial Union

Panoramic shot of the Erb Memorial Union

By Camille Lieurance

EUGENE, ORE.- The Erb Memorial Union (EMU) is currently undergoing major renovations. Since 1950, the EMU has provided a place for students to plan activities, study, and socialize.

However, change was desperately needed in order for the building to be up to standards. When the EMU building was first built, the maximum capacity only needed to be at 16,000 people. The University of Oregon campus is now home to over 24,000 students. The new renovation will provide over 80,000 square feet. In total, that adds up to 134,000 square feet of renovated space for students.

The estimated renovation budget is projected at 95 million dollars. Oregon plans to fundraise five million dollars through private donation. The rest of the money will come from student fees. The EMU facility fee will be sixty-seven dollars and will go into effect beginning in fall of 2014. The first phase of construction began in January 2014 and is ongoing. The renovations are projected to be complete by summer 2016.

During the construction, student organizations have been forced to relocate to McArthur Court. This change in location has left some students upset. Samantha Rago, a student, said this about the renovations, “I think it is a little inconvenient because people are being kicked out of their offices. I am with OSPIRG and it is difficult because we have not had a place to meet because there are renovations down there.”

Other students are not fazed and welcome the change. Theresa Nguyen, a student, had this to say, “I think it will be worth it because there will be more seats.”

For more information on the renovations being done, click here.

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