Ohio University plans to demolish Smith House and Atkinson House and is pending demolitions for Armbruster House and Weld House.
The demolitions of Smith House and Atkinson House are planned to start in late fiscal year 2019 and will be completed before the 2019 Fall Semester begins, Pete Trentacoste, executive director of Housing Residence Life, said in an email.
Plans for demolitions of Armbruster House and Weld House are being reviewed and pending a need analysis from the university. Trentacoste said if the university decides to tear all four down, the cost will be $3 million.
The demolitions are part of a larger project in the Comprehensive Master Plan and the Housing Master Plan. Phase One of the project included construction of Tanaka, Sowle, Luchs and Carr halls on South Green.
“The Comprehensive Master Plan envisioned the area to be dedicated to green space and recreational use,” Trentacoste said in an email.
Atkinson, Smith and Armbruster houses are used as residence halls. Weld House is being used as studio space for graduate students in the School of Art and Design, Emily Thomason, a graduate student studying art history, said.
Thomason has two smaller studio rooms, one she uses as a studio and another as storage. Other students who work on larger pieces have larger rooms to accommodate for their projects. There are some students who have to share storage space, but everyone has their own studio, Thomason said.
The graduate studios used to be at The Ridges. Since Weld House is close to Siegfried Hall, it is more convenient for students. There are six faculty members who have studios in Weld and about 30 students.
“A lot of people, myself included, have been able to have either the same amount of studio space at The Ridges, or even a little bit more,” Thomason said.
Thomason said she wasn’t concerned about the university getting rid of the buildings as much as she is worried about the department being continually moved to spaces that either need renovation or are just temporary.
“We do really like being in Weld,” Thomason said. “We have such good studio spaces, and our critique spaces are a lot better than they were in The Ridges.”
Nic Moorman, a freshman studying political science and pre law, lives in Atkinson House and said it’s a nice building with a nice community.