When Hope College students arrive on campus later this month for the 2004-05 school year they'll observe several major construction projects that have caused an active summer on campus.

When Hope College students arrive on campus later this month for the 2004-05 school year they'll observe several major construction projects that have caused an active summer on campus.

While the pace slows at Hope in many ways between May and August, the months also provide an essential opportunity for the college to build, renovate and upgrade.

The construction of the Richard and Helen DeVos Fieldhouse and the Martha Miller Center for GlobalCommunication have been the most visible of the projects this summer. Since the groundbreaking ceremoniesfor both buildings in the latter part of April, work has progressed from initial digging and foundation work to thebuilding of walls.

Blockwork began on the Martha Miller Center in June for the inner wall for the building's televisionstudio. The dual-wall design is intended to minimize the effect of vibrations and sound from outside, such asfrom trains passing along the tracks that lie immediately east of the building.

Both structures are benefits of the Legacies: A Vision of Hope comprehensive campaign

DeVos Fieldhouse is being built on Fairbanks Avenue north of 11th Street, and is scheduled toopen during the fall of 2005. The Martha Miller Center is being built on Columbia Avenue north of 11th Street,with completion anticipated for the 2005-06 school year.

In July, the college re-opened the renovated Peale Science Center, which is connected to the newscience center that opened in August of 2003. Departments in the buildings include biology, chemistry, thegeological and environmental sciences, nursing and psychology.

Construction on the Legacies project ran more than two years, beginning in March of 2002 with diggingfor the foundation of the new building. As noted on page two, a dedication ceremony and related activities havebeen scheduled for Friday, Oct. 8, during Homecoming Weekend.

The conclusion of the final phase of the science center project has initiated a series of moves, startingwith the faculty and laboratories and the science museum slated to be located in Peale, all of which weresqueezed temporarily into the new building. Those relocations have in turn enabled others to take their space in the new building, including the department of psychology, which for the past two years was temporarily locatedin a college-owned office building at 9 E. 10th St. That building is now being designated the Theil ResearchCenter in honor of Henri and Eleonore Theil, and by October will house the Joint Archives of Holland and theA.C. Van Raalte Institute, which will move from the ground level of the Van Wylen Library and the 100 E. 8thSt. building respectively.

Also with the completion of the science center work, Hope will be re-opening the parking lotimmediately west of Peale along 12th Street. The easternmost portion of the lot behind the Martha MillerCenter, along the railroad tracks between 10th and 11th streets, will also re-open soon, with more space tobecome available when the building is done.

A major research instrument has been installed in VanderWerf Hall. The college's new Pelletronparticle accelerator and attached microprobe facility for materials analysis arrived early this summer. Hopereceived funding for the equipment last year through a $660,000 grant from the National Science Foundation, thelargest grant for scientific equipment in Hope's history. Preparations during the 2003-04 school year includedremoving the aging VandeGraaff accelerator that previously occupied the laboratory space.

The residential portions of Phelps Hall have been renovated. New carpeting has been installed in thehallways and new tile in all of the rooms. Ongoing upgrades of the college's fire systems included both Phelpsand Kollen halls this year.

Other work on residences has included a variety of projects involving some 50 of the college's cottages. Projects have ranged from painting Avison's garage, to repairing plaster at Hinkamp, to replacing siding atVisscher.

Several other campus improvements both apparent and subtle will greet the full Hope community uponreturn in August. Additional projects this summer have ranged from the installation of new brick on the westpatio of the DeWitt Center to replacement of the Fried Center's roof.