By Olivia Sanchez | September 20, 2017 7:27pm


Howard Hall was taken down at the end of August.

by Hannah Sievert / The Beacon


The ceremonial groundbreaking on the University of Portland’s new academic building, Dundon-Berchtold Hall, will take place on Thursday, Sept. 21, at 6 p.m. and the groundbreaking on the academic building will begin later this fall. It is expected that the construction will be completed by January 2019.

The academic building, which will be over 63,000-square-feet, is being named for Board of Regents member Amy Dundon-Berchtold and Jim Berchtold, class of 1963, who gifted $15 million to the construction. It will house academic classrooms, an auditorium to be named after Portland Magazine Editor Brian Doyle, and the Dundon-Berchtold Institute for Moral Formation and Applied Ethics.

Photo courtesy of UP Market.

In addition to the Brian Doyle Auditorium, the three-story building will have 25 offices and 18 classrooms.

The Dundon-Berchtold Hall will replace the 90-year-old Howard Hall, which was deconstructed during the final weeks of summer.

The pre-Beauchamp-era gymnasium was removed to make way for a new academic building, Dundon-Berchtold Hall, according to Vice President for Operations Jim Ravelli. In addition to Howard Hall, four of seven giant sequoia trees in East Quad have also been lost to the construction.

by Olivia Sanchez / The Beacon

The building’s demolition did not happen all at once — no wrecking balls or bulldozers made dramatic appearances on The Bluff, Ravelli said. Instead, it was simply taken apart with cranes over the course of a few weeks at the end of the summer.

According to Ravelli, an effort was made to dispose of the building’s remnants in the most environmentally friendly way possible. Much of it won’t be able to be repurposed, but some wood beams and flooring will be used in the new building, and old bricks are available to students, alumni, faculty and staff who are interested in taking home a piece (or many pieces) of the gymnasium.

“The hazardous materials that we abated have been taken to landfills certified to handle such materials,” Ravelli said in an email to The Beacon. “(The bricks) that aren’t taken will be crushed along with the concrete and used in many places on campus.”

Pilots who are interested in obtaining a Howard Hall brick should contact Paul Luty at

Construction on the new building is set to commence in November, according to Ravelli, but is still contingent on permits being approved.

And unlike the days put into completing the construction of Lund Family Hall last fall, Ravelli said construction of Dundon-Berchtold Hall should take place only during normal business hours.

Contact News and Managing Editor Olivia Sanchez at or on Twitter @OliviaRSanchez.
This story was first published here.

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