The new $106.5 million USC Darla Moore School of Business has a targeted completion date of December 2013. Workers are now assembling the building’s steal superstructure. (Image/Provided)
Published Nov. 9, 2012
Construction of the new $106.5 million Darla Moore School of Business is meeting the construction timeline and budget, University of South Carolina trustees learned Friday.
With the first day of winter about six weeks away, weather is the biggest challenge in hitting the target completion date of December 2013, said Lekita Hargrave, project director.
“We anticipate more along the time of March and April that — as we close in (the building) — we’ll have more control of our environment and we’ll feel a little bit more comfortable and in control of that schedule,” Hargrave said.
In updating the project’s progress, Hargrave noted that the building’s four towers to house elevators and stairs have been completed and workers are now assembling the steel superstructure.
About 300,000 tons of structural steel provided by Columbia-based Owen Steel will be used for the building, she said.
A topping-out ceremony, which will mark construction reaching the highest point of the building, is set for Feb. 4.
One reason why the budget is in good shape is that there have been few change orders, Hargrave said. Change orders total less than 0.12% of the budget, she added.
“We feel very comfortable with the budget at this time,” she said.
About 3% of the project’s money is being spent with minority-owned firms. Around 16% of the budget is being spent with both minority- and women-owned firms, Hargrave said.
The project is expected to create about 1,700 jobs over its duration, she added.
The four-story building, which is at the corner of Assembly and Greene streets and next door to the Carolina Coliseum, will consist of 260,000 square feet. A 500-seat auditorium and 25 classrooms will be on the first level. Level 4 will house faculty and staff offices, and the research center. The rooftop will feature a terrace and pavilion.
On the main level will be a visitors’ center, cafe and a trading room with stock market ticker boards.
The building’s design incorporates goals for earning a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Platinum and a Net-Zero rating, meaning that it will generate as much energy as it consumes. Turf will be planted on the roof to reduce heat and improve energy efficiency.
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.