Grand Opening Scheduled for WSU’s Newest Campus Housing
OGDEN, Utah – A ribbon cutting and open house will take place Aug. 14 to celebrate the grand opening of Stewart Wasatch Hall, the newest addition to Weber State University’s student-housing project – Wildcat Village. The ribbon cutting will be at 2:30 p.m. with the open house immediately following, from 2:30-4:30 p.m.
Stewart Wasatch Hall is the flagship building at Wildcat Village. Built partially on the footprint of the now-demolished Wasatch Hall, the Stewart name has been added in recognition of a $5 million pledge from the Stewart Education Foundation.
“The gift toward construction of Stewart Wasatch Hall is significant because it lowers the rent for students,” said Brad Mortensen, vice president for University Advancement. “In a way, it’s like a perpetual housing scholarship that gives more students the chance to benefit from living on campus.”
And they will enjoy many benefits, including a technology-enhanced restaurant where residents simply swipe their student identification cards, place an order on a touchscreen, and a few minutes later enjoy freshly prepared, restaurant-quality food. The restaurant will be open for dinner, late night and weekend meals.
Stewart Wasatch Hall also includes a convenience store, study rooms, a student printing station, large meeting room, housing office and fitness center.
Director of Housing and Residence Life, Daniel Kilcrease, said Wildcat Village was designed to foster community and promote engagement for a well-rounded university experience.
This year, students have the opportunity to be involved in two specific Living Learning Communities (LLCs) in Wildcat Village. An LLC combines students’ special interests with living and learning opportunities.
“The Outdoor Adventure LLC will include rafting trips, kayak-roll classes, ski trips and avalanche-safety training,” Kilcrease said. “Students can also select the Cultural Affairs LLC and attend special premieres and performances of plays, art exhibits and other cultural events both on and off campus.”
Students will also enjoy the newly completed courtyard with its sand volleyball court, barbecue grills and fire pit.
Wildcat Village replaces Promontory Tower, LaSal, Wasatch and Stansbury halls that have been demolished. When finished, the complex will feature three new buildings that will house more than 500 students.
“In the past two years, we’ve had great demand from students who want to live in the WSU residential halls,” said Brett Perozzi, associate vice president for Student Affairs. “Dorms that were built in the 1960s don’t provide the strong learning environment required at a modern university. In our new housing complex, we have carefully crafted the design elements to ensure the long and useful life span of Wildcat Village. These buildings will serve students for the next 50 years.”
Each building in Wildcat Village will be a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Certification candidate. The buildings will have a number of green-design features, such as solar panels.
The construction of phase one included the Wildcat Village Hall One and parking area. Phase two will continue with the construction of Hall Three, which will employ a pod-style configuration — the latest in residential-hall design. When completed, the semicircular positioning of the buildings will be aesthetically pleasing and foster a community feel.
The Stewart Education Foundation, founded by now deceased WSU alumni Donnell and Elizabeth Dee Shaw Stewart, has supported numerous campus projects over the years. Elizabeth Stewart once said, “I learned many years ago the importance of beautiful surroundings in one’s life.”
The construction of Stewart Wasatch Hall is intended to live up to this standard.
“The university is so appreciative to the current directors of the Stewart Education Foundation for their vision to invest in a truly first-rate living environment for our students,” Mortensen said.
In addition to the Stewart Education Foundation pledge, the construction of Wildcat Village is funded through student fee revenue bonds, and other institutional sources such as housing program revenues.
Wildcat Village Facts & Figures:
Architect: MHTN Architects of Salt Lake City
Builder: Okland Construction
WSU Project Manager: Bruce Daley
•Three buildings, each three stories tall
•Hall 1 — 48,400 square feet
•Hall 2 — 88,480 square feet
•Hall 3 — 25,270 square feet
•Wildcat Village — 172,150 square feet
•Activity lounges with billiards, shuffleboard and big screen TVs
•Laundry rooms with web-access notification of availability
•On-site lectures, tutoring and other student-support services
•Food On Demand campus dining
•Recreational facility with cardio equipment and resistance machines