COLUMBIA, SC — University of South Carolina students and faculty will move into the new Darla Moore School of Business a few months later than initially planned because of a delay in the move of U.S. Department of Justice offices into the school’s current home.
The Department of Justice, which currently occupies the National Advocacy Center on USC’s campus, had planned to begin renovations on the Close-Hipp Building after New Year’s, but the “final design, financing, and State approval process are not aligned for a January 2014 start date,” former Moore School Dean Hildy Teegen told faculty and staff in an email.
The new timeline “backs off what was an accelerated construction schedule,” said USC spokesman Wes Hickman. The university had been paying contractors “acceleration incentives,” Teegen said in the email.
No longer paying those could potentially save money on the $106.5 million project, named for Lake City businesswoman Darla Moore, who has contributed significantly to the business school in the past, Hickman said. Savings estimates were not available.
Faculty and administration can move from the Close-Hipp Building to the new building over a slightly longer and less hectic period of time, he said. The original move dates were planned over the school’s month-long winter break.
“This is an opportunity to move that back to a more natural time,” Hickman said.
Delaying the move also will be less stressful for faculty.
“This is good news for the Moore school and the university as it relieves us of some of the pressures of hurriedly moving our faculty, staff and students,” Teegen said.
Classes will begin in the new Moore School at the start of the 2014 summer term.
The state-of-the-art, largely glass building is expected to be certified at the highest energy-efficiency ranking possible.
In front of the new building, workers are continuing construction to make Assembly Street crossings safer for pedestrians.
Completion is scheduled for November – just before the Moore School’s original opening date. The number of students crossing the main downtown thoroughfare will increase by up to 15,000 a day once the building opens.