New Arts Building construction speeds up

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With warmer weather this season, construction of the new Arts Building has sped up quite a bit. 

According to Ed Adams, dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communications, foundation footings are in place and insulation is going up on the building as construction workers prepare for exterior cladding.

The west side of the building that holds most of the offices and classrooms has made incredible progress. The structural steel is in place along with a lot of the framing.

“It’s really easy to build an office. I mean if you look at an office it’s four square walls and a door. That’s pretty easy. When you’re talking about a three tiered structure that’s also supported behind, that’s a little more complex,” Adams said.

Adams said the east side of the building is behind schedule due to the complex structure, including a three level main stage proscenium theater, a two level experimental theater, a black box theater, a new cinema space, galleries, studios and more. 

“I was amazed at the whole collaborative environment of doing this. I thought that they just have an architect come design it and it was done. But they bring in sound experts, lighting experts, that the architects bring in to collaborate and to help them with some of these things,” Don Powell, assistant dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communications, said.

According to Adams, the old arts building had many issues with sound bleeding through the walls between theaters. Many theaters were unable to put on performances at the same time because of their placement. The new building has eliminated these issues, partly because the music building will now be separate from the arts.

Though these complex structures have proven to be the most difficult aspect of the process, Adams said it will be well worth it in the end for the students’ experience.

“Now with a lot of the collaborative spaces people can get together and work on projects together, such as scoring for animation or other film projects by bringing people from the school of music and having a collaborative environment more,” Powell said.

Designed specifically with the students in mind, many of the new additions will accommodate updates made over the years to BYU’s arts majors.

“I’m most excited for the student experience. I want to be a student all over again,” Adams said.

The building is projected to be finished in Summer 2025.

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