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Look of new Moore School unveiled at USC

By James T. Hammond
Published April 18, 2011

University of South Carolina trustees got a look at a model of the new Darla Moore School of Business that is to be built at Assembly and Greene streets in the Innovista district of Columbia.

“We’re about 30% into design, so some of the features depicted in the renderings could easily change,” said Jeffrey D. Lamberson, director of campus planning and construction at USC.

Thomas Quasney, associate vice president in the Department of Facilities, told trustees it is likely the administration will be back to the board with cost increases in the near future, but he did not ask for any action by the board on Friday.

USC has signed an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice under which the department will lease the current business school building, and the rent for the building will be used to help pay for the new business school. The original estimated cost of the new school was about $90 million.

Quasney said USC is seeking to make the building a totally carbon-neutral facility and to qualify for the highest LEED certification for green building standards. Through a partnership and grant from the Department of Energy Commercial Building Partnerships, the Moore school hopes to achieve a platinum certification for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, Lamberson said.

The anticipated completion date for the new building is December 2013.

“We will be presenting similar renderings to the city of Columbia for the first time for their design guidance and approval this month,” Lamberson said. “That, together with our own USC Design Review Committee, will continue to shape the final design.”

Lamberson said the scope of the project provides the University of South Carolina an opportunity to strategically locate and establish the Darla Moore School of Business as a hub to Innovista and a model school of international business and sustainable enterprise and development.

“The new facility will consist of 260,000 square feet featuring state-of-the-art classroom and meeting space, modern faculty and staff offices, all designed to model best business practices to our students, bringing the best of the world to Columbia and the best of Columbia to the world, Lamberson said.

Also included is a collaborative effort between the Moore School and the USC School of Music that provides a 500-seat auditorium with the versatility to support both academic and music events and performances.

The 500-seat auditorium and the school’s 25 classrooms will be located on the first level. Level 4 will house faculty offices and the research center. Level 5 will be a rooftop terrace and pavilion.

The new building will go into the space between Greene Street and the Carolina Coliseum. University officials have not yet decided what to do with the coliseum, which still provides academic space, though the arena space is largely unused. Trustees even disagreed at the Friday board meeting over whether the coliseum would ultimately be torn down.

But Trustee William Hubbard said the new Moore School building would be unaffected by the disposition of the coliseum, no matter what its ultimate fate.

Commenting on the new building, USC President Harris Pastides said, “This is exactly the right thing for the Darla Moore School of Business. This is the right building to maintain the stature of the program.”

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