College “Breaking into a New Era” with Construction of General Academic and Music II Building
Article by: Mike Bratten
In the spirit of “Breaking into a New Era,” the English Building on Del Mar College’s East Campus is undergoing demolition to make way for new construction. A one-track hoe – a piece of heavy equipment used for demolition – began tearing down the brick walls, tar sheathing and Sheetrock around the structure on June 23 with the entire demolition process lasting about two weeks.
The English Building has been a fixture on the College’s East Campus for 50 years. It was built at the same time the Beatles recorded their “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” album.
Construction started on Nov. 4, 1966, and was finished by October of 1967, under the leadership of DMC President Dr. Jean Richardson, after whom Richardson Performance Hall is named.
According to the Sept. 27, 1966 issue of The Foghorn, the Board of Regents authorized construction of the English Building for $372,000. Up to that point, the English Department was scattered among several buildings on the East Campus.
After completion, the building contained the entire English Department and was located adjacent to the Girls’ Dormitory on Kosar – a facility long since removed. The English Building had 12 classrooms, 24 offices, a departmental chairman’s office, book storeroom and departmental library.
The College is replacing the facility with the General Academic and Music Building (GAMB) Phase II, the largest project in Del Mar College’s 2014 capital improvement program and one that will change the character of the East Campus.
Consisting of interconnected buildings, GAMB Phase II will provide upgraded, state-of-the-art facilities for DMC faculty and students and create new gathering spaces, plazas and pedestrian pathways.
The GAMB Phase II completes new facilities for the Music Department that begun in Phase I, adding three rehearsal rooms, faculty studios, practice rooms, music classrooms and music support spaces. The Music portion adds 42,500 square feet of space.
The outdoor amphitheater begun in Music Phase I will be completed, providing a feature that inspires musical performances along a protected north/south pedestrian pathway.
The General Academic portion of the facility, at 85,000 square feet, will house the Division of Arts & Sciences and the departments of English & Philosophy, Communications, Languages & Reading, Mathematics and Social Sciences.
Additionally, the Center for E-Learning and central office for DMC’s Dual Credit Program will be located in the GAMB Phase II. These departments and programs are currently housed throughout the East Campus.
At the central north/south axis of the GAMB Phase II will be Mike Anzaldúa Plaza, a linear green space memorializing one of DMC’s most beloved educators that will include shaded and wind-protected places to sit, read, gather or entertain.
Additional info on the GAMB Phase II:
* Size: 127,500 sq. ft. total (General Academic portion: 85,000 sq. ft.; Music portion: 42,500 sq. ft.)
* Estimated cost: $46,000,000
* Estimated completion/occupancy date: 8/15/19
* Architects: Richter Architects, BRW Architects
* Contractor: Bartlett Cocke & Beecroft, JV
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Del Mar College empowers students to achieve their dreams. We offer quality programs, individual attention, outstanding instruction through faculty with real-world experience and affordable costs to credit and noncredit students in Corpus Christi and the South Texas Coastal Bend area. Nationally recognized while locally focused, we’re ranked in the top two percent of community colleges in the country granting associate degrees to Hispanic students (Community College Week). Del Mar College focuses on offering our students programs that match current or emerging career opportunities. Whether students are interested in the fine arts, sciences, business, occupational or technical areas, students get the education they need for the future they want at Del Mar College.