New construction ongoing at SIUC

By Gus Bode

Shrycock will connect with Altgeld Hall

The sound of musical instruments in Altgeld Hall has been replaced with the roar of drills and power saws.

Altgeld Hall, which houses the music classes, began $10.4-million renovations earlier this year that are slated for completion by September 2003. The building, constructed in 1896, will be equipped with acoustically sound classrooms and recording and performing studios.


Besides the internal renovations, construction workers are building a walkway that will connect Shryock Auditorium with Altgeld Hall.

The walkway will aid students transporting musical instruments to the auditorium during performances, said Robert Weiss, director of the School of Music. That will protect the instruments from the weather and temperature changes, he said.

In the meantime, music students are making do with temporary classrooms in the Northwest Annex, Quigley Hall and the Old Baptist Foundation.

Although the temporary classrooms are a little cramped, the temporary inconvenience is worth it, Weiss said.

“We’re making due,” he said. “Everyone seems to be willing because they know we’ll be in a new facility.”

That is not the only place at SIUC where construction crews are laboring. J & L Robinson Construction is relining 85 feet of an underground tunnel from the Physical Plant with another layer of concrete.

The construction site is near the Student Center on the corner of Lincoln Drive and Illinois Avenue.


The tunnel, which protects steam pipes from the Physical Plant used for heating, will be complete in about three weeks, said Al Easton, the crew’s superintendent.

Twelve inches of concrete will be added to the tunnel’s sides, and 18 inches will be installed on top of the tunnel, he said.

Reporter Ben Botkin can be reached at [email protected]