Student groups to move into ASUC Student Union building

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Kenneth Berling/Staff

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Some student groups that had aimed to move into the newly renovated ASUC Student Union complex at the beginning of the semester can expect to move in within the upcoming week as construction continues well into the semester.

The third floor of Eshleman Hall is designed to house more than 40 groups and committees for meeting purposes, while the first floor of the Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union building holds office spaces that the ASUC has allocated to student groups, such as the Blue and Gold Yearbook, Berkeley ReUse and the Open Computing Facility, or OCF.

The ASUC had originally been informed that construction would be completed between August and October. Student groups, in the meantime, can register through the ASUC for spaces in Wheeler, Dwinelle and Barrows halls.

The ASUC released applications for student organizations to claim spaces in the Student Union complex building in spring 2015.

According to Joe Wilson, undergraduate representative to the ASUC Student Union Board, ASUC had not previously settled on an exact move-in date for student groups.

“We’ve been in pretty good contact with student groups about the timeline,” Wilson said. “It’s been always in flux — we’ve never had a static date. The construction project team has refused to give us a final date.”

Lucy Li, co-editor in chief of the Blue and Gold Yearbook — one organization that had hoped to move in at the start of the semester — said in an email that near the end of the spring semester, the ASUC “originally tentatively” set its move-in date for Aug. 17. The ASUC later informed it that this date had been pushed back to Oct. 14.

According to Suzi Halpin, the executive director of operations for the ASUC Lower Sproul Redevelopment Project, the MLK building and Eshleman must provide adequate emergency escape routes before groups can move in — a process yet to be completed because of ongoing construction on Bancroft Way.

“It’s all construction … getting things approved, permits approved,” Halpin said. “There’s a lot of approval that has to be done before a construction project can be turned over. If we don’t get the approval, we won’t get the building.”

ASUC Executive Vice President Lavanya Jawaharlal acknowledged that some clubs could find difficulties securing space on campus but that this problem is typical. To help the space crunch, she said, the ASUC previously launched the Wheeler late-night program, in which groups can meet in the building’s classrooms from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.

The first official move-in date is set for Monday. Clubs will move in at a staggered rate, beginning with the ASUC’s move to Eshleman on Monday. The OCF will move into MLK on Nov. 6, according to campus facilities coordinator Geoff Bingaman.

Contact Cassandra Vogel at [email protected].

Correction(s):
Because of misinformation from a source, a previous version of this article stated that the Open Computing Facility is scheduled to move into space in the Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union on Nov. 1. In fact, OCF is tentatively scheduled to move in Nov. 6, according to campus facilities coordinator Geoff Bingaman.