As staff, faculty and students await the Michigan Union’s reopening in winter 2020 after extensive renovation, they do not have to wait to see what the renovated Union will look like.
A virtual “Tour of the Michigan Union, 2020” is available and provides a sneak peek of the university’s campus living room.
The video, created by Workshop Architects and Student Life Auxiliary Marketing, takes viewers on a walk-through of the facility based on architectural renderings of key Michigan Union spaces once renovations are complete.
The tour floats through the entryway, first-floor hallways, common areas, the now-enclosed courtyard, the new South Lounge, and the much-anticipated IdeaHub — a purposeful space designed for student organizations to meet, collaborate and practice leadership.
“New life is coming to the Michigan Union with its restored first-floor entrance area, year-round courtyard, lounges that work for today’s students and an IdeaHub where student organizations make things happen,” says Susan Pile, senior director of University Unions and Auxiliary Services.
“Greater accessibility is also a key feature and great care is being taken to retain the historic charm, the architectural details and the warmth of everyone’s favorite campus gathering place.”
The $85.2 million renovation, which temporarily closed the Union in April 2018, will help the university meet the needs of students in the future, honor the architectural integrity of the Union and address significant infrastructure deficiencies of this 100-year-old campus gem, says Pile.
Specifically, the project will enhance program and social space on the main level by enclosing the courtyard, expand and improve informal gathering spaces on the first floor through restoration of the original 1919 floor plan, and create state-of-the-art spaces for student organizations and student involvement.
The project will also provide a deep infrastructure renewal including life safety, electrical, mechanical and plumbing system improvements, elevator upgrades, replacement of the roof and restoration and replacement of windows, interior finish upgrades on floors one through four, and restroom upgrades.
The Michigan Union’s North Entrance also will be redesigned to become a more welcoming, open and light-infused entrance with an enclosed ramp.
Pile urges viewers to check out the video tour “to see for yourself just how beautifully the old and the new will complement and elevate one another in the Union’s second century as the heart and hearth of the Michigan campus.”