Early Summer Update On Campus Construction Projects University Chapel closed June 5 as renovations get underway; Marketplace and Café 77 project is on target for fall completion.
During the 2022-23 academic year, Washington and Lee University announced several campus construction projects in support of the campus master plan that was approved by the Board of Trustees in October 2021.
Below is an update on the progress of various projects.
Dining Venue Renovation (First Phase) – John W. Elrod Commons
The first phase of the dining venue renovations to the Marketplace and Café 77 began in February 2023 and construction is expected to be completed for the return of the undergraduate classes in late August 2023. W&L expects community members to have full access to the dining facilities for the beginning of Fall Term.
W&L Turf Field Replacement
Work on replacing the e-layer and AstroTurf® playing surface at the W&L Turf Field began in April 2023 and is nearing completion. Pending the final inspection and contractor punch list, the new field should be ready for use by August 1, if not earlier.
Sydney Lewis Hall Roof and Exterior Maintenance
The maintenance to Sydney Lewis Hall began May 22 and is progressing according to plan. Preparation has been made to allow construction crews access to the roof, and the solar panels have been removed and repurposed off site. Demolition activities for the roof are set to begin within the next week as attention turns toward the roofing and brick remediation activities. The project is tracking to be finished by the start of the law school’s Spring Semester 2024.
University Chapel is receiving several updates to the interior and exterior of the facility. The exterior maintenance began on May 30 with the W&L grounds crew performing significant pruning of the building’s iconic ivy vines on its façade. This work has been completed and the vines are expected to support some initial green growth by this fall. The indoor renovation will include the installation of a screen wall in the anteroom located between the original 1868 chapel and the 1883 annex containing the Lee memorial sculpture and family crypt. The screen wall provides a visible barrier between the chapel and the sculpture chamber, while allowing for freedom of movement between the two spaces. The chapel was closed to the public June 5 for the interior work to be performed and is expected to reopen in time to host university events scheduled for late August 2023. Once completed, all parts of the building will remain accessible to the public.
New Williams School Building
Construction of a new Williams School building on West Washington Street will be preceded by the demolition of Baker Hall and Davis Hall. Asbestos activities that are required prior to the removal of these buildings are planned to start June 12, while full mobilization on the construction project is expected at the beginning of August 2023.
Student Health Center
The Student Health Center currently located in Davis Hall will move to its temporary swing space located at 200 Generals Lane starting June 21. The university anticipates the center will be fully operational for students’ matriculation this fall. The center will be housed in this location until the new Lindley Center for Student Wellness is complete, with construction anticipated to begin in January 2024.
Dining Venue Renovation (Second Phase) – John W. Elrod Commons
The second phase of the Elrod Commons dining renovations involves extending the back dining area of the Marketplace into the Cohen Family Amphitheater, allowing for additional indoor and outdoor seating. This project is awaiting the proper permitting and the university forecasts that work could begin early-to-mid fall 2023. The second phase of the Elrod Commons dining expansion is anticipated to be completed by Fall Term 2024.
For continuous updates on the capital projects that the university is undertaking as part of its master plan, please visit the Capital Projects update page on the University Facilities website.