The NDSU South Engineering is set to be demolished in the summer of 2023. “The building has been a pivotal part of the NDSU identity and character,” said NDSU President Nicholas Moore. “It is one of our most beautiful buildings and is a testimony to the long legacy of our university.”
For 116 years, South Engineering has been a part of student’s and faculty’s lives. “We have to deal with the reality that everything has an expiration date, our buildings included.” Moore added, “as much as it would be great to keep the building forever, we have to confront reality.”
Many have pointed to the problems the building faces and are looking for some sort of a solution. “The building is from 1907, and it wasn’t designed with modern safety measures in mind,” said architecture professor Kate Greene. “Some changes are needed if it were to persist.”
The lack of proper air conditioning in the summer, along with concerns about the air quality, would require significant investment. “The building overall feels dated. I am going to college in 2023, not 1903,” said NDSU sophomore, Anna Harris.
More parking will replace the building after its removal. Harris added, “parking at the memorial union is disastrous. There never is parking most nights, and during the day, it is way too expensive if you are able to find a spot.”
“Let’s take this for the positive opportunity it is,” Moore said. We have a demand for more parking, and I am ready to do whatever I can to assist with that problem.” Adding, “the potential cost of renovations is too much, and students have been vocal about their destain of the building and parking situation.”
“As everyone is aware, we have budgetary concerns. If a space costs too much, we won’t be afraid to replace it. Open spaces, like that in front of the library, will be considered as well.” Moore said, “we can’t charge trees for parking.”
South Engineering, for many, is a fundamental part of campus and is too valuable to even consider removing. “It is about more than parking. It is about creating a welcoming environment,” says Weston Rogers, a NDSU Senior. “If NDSU is reduced to nothing but lifeless drab parking lots, why should we expect anyone to come here?”
“Thirty more parking spots won’t solve the issue for a campus of 10,000… if anything, we need to expand our busing service,” said Rogers.
Despite the controversy, the plan remains. Moore says, “nothing is finalized. We are open to ideas, but let’s not be afraid of change.”