University of Alabama at Birmingham


University Center Renovation and Expansion Advisory Services

Client Opportunity

  •  Utilize a feasibility and program assessment to inform its decision as to whether to renovate the existing student union or develop a new one
  • Determine the return on investment for renovation versus new construction
  • Better understand the ideal program for the new / renovated facility

B&D Process

  • Led a strategic asset value session with university leadership to ensure the project’s goals were aligned with the university’s overall mission
  • Conducted user interviews regarding present and future usage
  • Created a demand model to project demand for self-directed activity spaces
  • Performed a student survey to determine present usage, quantify demand for quality-of-life spaces, and identify future preferences
  • Provided design review services and developed the facility’s business plan

Project Highlights

  • University decided to build a new student center to include food service, multi-purpose rooms, conference / meeting rooms, a bookstore, a theatre / auditorium, and administrative spaces
  • The facility’s orientation provides positive connections with other campus quality-of-life spaces, such as the rec center and residential facilities
  • The 162,000 square foot, $48.5 million Hill Student Center opened in January 2016