Construction crews and physical plant employees have wrapped up work on Xavier’s newest and largest residence hall and dining complex in time for sophomores who began moving in on Sunday, Aug. 21. The entire complex is 245,000 square feet and is the second largest building on campus after the Cintas Center.
The complex houses 535 students in suite-style living areas in four connected buildings and includes the James E. Hoff, S.J., Dining Commons, named after Xavier’s 33rd Jesuit president. The new dining hall seats up to 700 people and replaces the Hoff Marketplace in the Cintas Center. It was open for business on Friday, Aug. 19, when the campus was bustling with activity as freshman students moved into their residence halls with the help of family members.
The complex has a green roof over the dining area and was built to LEED silver standards. The dining hall includes several food stations, a bakery and a built-in stone hearth pizza oven plus a Coca-Cola Freestyle machine that lets users create their own drinks in at least 125 different varieties, such as Raspberry Diet Coke and Fanta Grape. Watch short videos of the Freestyle machine and the pizza oven for a fun look at the newest additions to Xavier dining.
The residence hall wings include two, three and four-bedroom suites with common areas, one or two full baths, tile floors and walk-in showers. The first-floor laundry is open 24 hours a day, with TV monitors and vending machines.
The building’s location across from Bellarmine Chapel helps unify the campus center and creates more green space, making Xavier more pedestrian friendly. Adding another 535 students living in the core of campus is expected to help create a more vibrant center, especially with the dining hall being located closer to where students are living.
The building was designed and built approximately six months faster than it would have been using a traditional approach and actually was finished almost two weeks early.
The project was designed and built in accordance with the Green Building Institute’s Silver LEED guidelines. These included designing items such as low-flow faucets and fixtures, motion-detecting light switches, energy efficient lamps, recycling bins, green roofs, and metering of the building by wing such that students can compete in energy savings challenges. Also, 54 percent of all construction debris, a total of 2,330 tons, was diverted from landfills to recycling facilities.
The building contains 600,000 bricks, 158,400 brick pavers and more than 75,000 square feet of glass surface, the equivalent of 16 NCAA Division 1 basketball courts. The roof above the dining hall is a certified green roof containing 840 cubic yards of topsoil and 140 tons of sand under all of the plants and sod.
The size of the building’s footprint is close to four football fields.