The Center for Student Life (CSL) was a project born out of the desire for a combined center for learning, socializing, and dining for Augustana College’s students. The goals of the CSL were multi-faceted: to preserve and capitalize on their library facility, upgrade three major student life functions, reduce operating costs, create needed student life spaces, and offer the types of learning spaces that are considered most valuable. This bold concept delivers a fusion of study, dining, and play spaces, and serves as the new “Main Street” for their student body.
The project scope encompasses a renovated library and special collection spaces, new quiet and group study spaces, offices for several key student group functions, a reading/writing center, and a dining center that serves 2,500 people each day. The CSL is situated in the literal and figurative heart of campus, atop a steep hill supported by an underground, five-story retaining wall. The heavily used library and its equally loved coffee shop were to remain operational through the duration of construction, which spanned more than a full academic year. Additionally, the two existing dining hall facilities were to be closed and relocated to the Center for Student Life. On-time project completion of this multi-phased project was absolutely critical to continue these core services for the campus.