columbiacollegerendering Columbia College Chicago
Rendering of plans for student center at Columbia College Chicago

Columbia College Chicago breaks ground on student center

The 114,000-square-foot facility will be the college's first dedicated student center in its 127-year history.

For the first time in its 127-year history, students at Columbia College Chicago will have a dedicated student center.

The college has broken ground on a five-story, 114,000 square-foot facility that is slated to open in early 2019 in the city's South Loop. The building will become a central hub for the campus.

Students, faculty, and staff at Columbia have long called for a student space on campus. As a result of the many input sessions held in 2015, the new student center captures the collective vision of the college community to meet the specialized and practical needs of students.

The facility is designed to reflect Columbia’s role as an incubator for creative industries, and is an example of the college’s commitment to empowering students, building community partnerships, and embracing diversity.

Among the planned building features: 

  • Flexible, multipurpose spaces to facilitate informal and formal interaction among students of all majors and interests
  • Work and presentation spaces
  • Wellness and fitness facilities 
  • Dining and recreation spaces
  • An event space that accommodates 800 people for college and community events

The Columbia College campus spans 20 buildings, serves more than 8,000 students and employs more than 2,000 full- and part-time faculty and staff. Its curriculum blends creative arts, media, liberal arts and business for 8,000 students in more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

The architect for the student center is Gensler.

MORE: YouTube video from Columbia College:

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