File Photo. Credit: Jackie Espitia / Mustang News

This summer, Cal Poly broke ground on several major construction projects on campus, many of which are set to be completed within the next year. 

According to a university news release, some of the projects include “building the John Madden Football Center, reconfiguring the Administration Building parking lot, renovating the interior of the University Union, expanding the Technology Park, and beginning the Kennedy Library transformation.” 

Reconfiguration of the parking lot adjacent to the Administration Building began June 26. According to information on the Facilities Management and Development website, the parking lot will reopen in late fall with adjustments for vehicle and foot traffic, particularly with flow from connecting streets.  

After a partial closure that began in mid-June, the McPhee University Union will reopen to total capacity for the fall quarter. The upper floor was configured to become a 24-hour study space in lieu of the Kennedy Library, which began its estimated two-year closure on June 16. 

Development of Building 19 is nearing completion, with the 1901 Marketplace set to open at the start of the 2024 winter quarter. The facility will feature nine venues, including Panda Express and Chick-fil-A. 

According to the Executive Director of Facilities Planning and Capital Projects Anthony Palazzo, the new dining facility is “on par with Vista Grande, with a much more modern feel than The Avenue and 805 Kitchen,” the previous Campus Dining venues in this location. 

The smaller building next to 1901 Marketplace, previously the Sandwich Factory, will include two new student lounge spaces, called the Pavilion and the Forum. Although it is an allocated library study space alternative for the next two years, the ASI-operated facility will later be open for reservations from student groups, according to Palazzo. 

In the western corner of campus along Mount Bishop Road, expansion of the Technology Park is underway. The facility, which opened in 2010, serves as a liaison between technology-based start-ups, companies and student researchers, including the Applied Biotechnology Institute, HaptX and SRI International.

“It’s a great way for these companies to have a presence on campus, giving access to Cal Poly students as interns, and possibly future staff members,” Palazzo said. 

The estimated $11.2 million in Technology Park renovations are largely funded by a $6.7 million federal grant. With plans to open summer of 2024, the upgraded facility will include an additional 30,000 square feet of furnished office space in a new two-story adjacent building. Possible future tenants are still in negotiation.

The John Madden Football Center, a 30,000-square-foot facility, will aim to “serve the daily needs of the team during training time and the regular season,” with a locker room, weight and training rooms, as well as help recruit student-athletes, according to the project briefing

The current focus is on preparing the grounds for construction, which is set to begin summer of 2024.

“There is significant infrastructure underneath,” Palazzo said. “Many of our storm drains and sewer lines exit there, and Internet lines go through there as well.”

As students return to campus for the fall quarter, Palazzo reiterates the importance of staying alert when walking to class. 

“We make construction sites safe and provide pedestrian paths, but it is still important for students to stay aware of their surroundings,” he said. 

Editors Note: This article was updated on Sep. 20 to clarify that Cal Poly broke ground on several major construction projects on campus.