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If you happened to walk through Mantor hall in the past few weeks, you may have noticed something unusual... read more

Oldest residence hall receives new look, updates
Sam Spiehs
Antelope Staff
Courtesy Photo
The original Mens Hall lobby was constructed in 1939.
Photo by Megan Blume
The 2.1 million dollar renovation of Men’s Hall began in November 2009 and was complete for students to move in this semester. A fresh coat of pain spruced up the lobby.

After a vacancy during the 2009-2010 semesters, the oldest residence hall on the UNK campus, Men’s Hall, has a new look for the fall semester with renovations nearing completion.

A fresh coat of paint is apparent as you walk in the lobby of Men’s Hall, though it still looks much as it did in 1939. The original terrazzo has been polished, the steel stair rail of 1939 has been shined and the pillars have been painted a pale yellow.

The building received a fresh coat of paint on all levels while air conditioning and a sprinkler system were installed throughout the building.

“The major change that was made was a sprinkler system was installed, which ties into the fire alarm system,” said Lee McQueen, UNK director of facilities. “This system significantly increases the safety of the building.”

The building is now handicap accessible on all levels for the first time in history.

“We have an elevator that stops at all the floors which is significant to the handicap accessibility,” McQueen said.

Some of the doorways were widened and the bathrooms were modernized to give disabled students easier accessibility.  

Men’s is the most unique of all the residence halls, because of the 1930s architecture. The building has many of its original features both inside and outside of the hall.

“Men’s is unique because of the art deco architecture throughout the building. The art deco theme is carried on the outside of the building as well,” McQueen said. “Although the rooms are carpeted, we tried to maintain the original terrazzo throughout the building.”

The renovation of Men’s Hall began in late November 2009. According to McQueen, Men’s renovation was estimated to cost about 2.1 million dollars.

The construction is almost complete with a few details to work out throughout the building. The bathrooms still need stalls, showers still need doors, and paint and trim work need to be touched up on all floors.

According to McQueen, Randall Hall is now being renovated and should be complete by spring 2011.

Centennial Towers are next on the renovation list, but work will not begin until the summer of 2012.

Reporter Sam Spiehs

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