It’s exciting that after almost ten years of waiting and planning, the Clough Undergraduate Learning Commons is finally going to be built. The construction next to the library will be a pain in the meantime, but the benefits of the Commons sound like it will be worth it in the end. The main trouble during construction will be losing the parking next to the library, but with a parking deck proposed on the bottom level of the Learning Commons, there will be even an even better parking situation in the future.
The building looks like it will be a valuable asset to campus. With all the learning resources centralized and easy to access, students, especially the freshmen who they are targeted to, may actually begin to utilize the resources available to them. They will be even more likely to be used because so many freshman and sophomores will already be in that building for science labs or large lecture classes. Having all the labs together in one place will be convenient, but perhaps the best thing about building all new freshman and sophomore labs is that the labs will be brand new. Most of the current freshman labs are in poor shape and don’t present a good image of Tech to our new freshmen.
The building will have a new turnaround out front, so finally buses will come to the center of campus. Since this will also lead to the closing of Atlantic, pedestrians can finally walk by Howey without the fear of being run down by cars.
Thanks to Clough’s efforts with the Board of Regents, most of the building will be funded by the state, with a small portion paid for by private donors. This makes the building even more appealing, as it is not going to be paid for by tuition money, which hopefully will extinguish any qualms about money being used on the building. Hopefully this will allow all the important plans for the building to be carried out with minimal impediment.
The Clough Learning Commons will continue the new tradition of making buildings on campus green. It will not only be LEED certified, but it incorporates many innovative technologies that will conserve water and energy above and beyond many green buildings already existing on campus. With the Klaus building’s recent upgrade to gold certification status, Tech is beginning to become more and more environmentally friendly. Tech’s goal of sustainability is becoming more of a reality.
Overall, the building looks like it will be one more step towards a more modern Tech campus. With such a student-friendly building being added to the heart of campus, the spirit of academic importance to undergaduates will increase on campus, to respect Clough’s legacy to students.