Bowling Green State University: University Hall Renovation

Bowling Green, Ohio


University Hall was the first building to open on Bowling Green State University’s campus in 1915. Housing the President’s office, all administrative functions, classrooms, a theater over a gymnasium and more, the iconic building endured extensive use as well as eight substantial renovation projects over the next century.

Surprises greeted Mosser behind and within every wall throughout the complete renovation of this load-bearing masonry structure featuring chase runs for heating. Archways and doorways were created, requiring methodical demolition to preserve the original 100-year old bricks which Mosser re-used to infill existing openings which were no longer needed. A forensic masonry expert helped Mosser match the original mortar mix, (which, interestingly, included no cement).

Enough major surprises were identified in the first three months of construction that a redesign of the structural steel system was required in the center core. Treating this area as a separate project, Mosser continued work in other parts of the building and ultimately completed these critical structural steel changes with no time added to the original schedule.

The original two-story theater and gymnasium was demolished, leaving two roof-covered, free-standing 40′ x 50′ walls, requiring intricate temporary shoring and bracing. This area now features four floors and houses the largest single-elevation classroom on campus. The grand marble stairway in the main entryway was refurbished and the space transformed into a more open, welcoming area which features old-world plastering and finishing techniques.

“By any metric you apply, University Hall is a success and it is all because of you and your willingness to work constructively within a team…Thank you all for your hard work and dedication."

 Brian L. Swope, CCM, Assistant Director, Office of Design and Construction at Bowling Green State University