UofL ‘tops out’ state-of-the-art academic classroom, services building




    LOUISVILLE, Ky. — University of Louisville officials today “topped out” a state-of-the-art, 150,000-square-foot academic building that will enhance learning and provide academic and career services to students.

    Expected to open for the fall 2018 semester, the four-story, $80 million academic building will primarily serve undergraduate students on the Belknap Campus. It will house more than two dozen classrooms, as well as science labs and group study areas, gathering spaces and food service options.

    It also will feature a new program to help students align their abilities, academic degree and possibilities for future employment as part of their college success. The Career Development Center, open to all university students and housed in a building nearby, will be a partner in the programming for the new building. 

    “This building is vital for many reasons,” said Greg Postel, interim president. “It will provide the learning environment and the related services that will help drive our students’ success, both while they are undergraduates and after they have moved on to careers, families and positions of leadership in the community.”

    The Kentucky Legislature approved funding for the building in 2014 to address a significant lack of classroom space at UofL. According to a Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education study, UofL had the most significant shortage of classroom space among all Kentucky’s public universities.

    A “topping out” ceremony involves installing the highest beam on a structure that is under construction.

    The new facility is being built on the site that previously housed the Crawford Gym. Built in the 1960s, Crawford once served as the practice facility for the UofL basketball and swimming programs and, later, as home to the College of Education and Human Development’s Department of Health and Sport Sciences.


    John Drees is a 35-year veteran in the Office of Communications and Marketing. As vice president, communications and marketing, he works closely with the president, provost and other senior administrators, oversees the Office of Communications and Marketing, including media relations, marketing and brand, broadcast, social media, internal communication, crisis communication, visitor services and special events and activities. A former sports editor for the Voice Newspapers, he was a regular contributor to a variety of publications, including the Kentucky Sports Report and the Courier-Journal. A poor but enthusiastic golfer, he is an avid Cardinal sports fan. He also loves the Detroit Lions, so pity him.