LBCC Breaks Ground on $8.7M Project to Upgrade English Dept. Bldg.
Long Beach City College officials celebrated the kickoff of an $8.7-million, bond-funded construction project to upgrade Building P with a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday, March 8 at the Liberal Arts Campus.
“This renovation project will modernize the oldest building on campus while preserving many of the historic and architectural features,” said LBCC Acting Superintendent-President Ann-Marie Gabel. “We will pay respect to the building’s history while making the necessary upgrades to meet the needs of today’s students in the English Department.”
The project will overhaul the 16,016-square-foot Building P, which houses the English Department’s Composition, Creative Writing, Journalism and Literature programs. This will be the first major overhaul to the 82-year-old building. Over the years, it has received minor renovations such as roof and window replacements and the reconfiguration of classroom and office space.
The renovated building will provide students and faculty with five new classrooms, one computer lab, a multi-purpose room, a digital newsroom for the Viking Newspaper, two meeting rooms and 12 offices. It will be upgraded to meet current building codes, including accessibility to disabled students, seismic structural, and fire alarm upgrades. Building P also will receive upgrades to the audio-visual and information technology systems, including motorized screens and projectors that easily link to various devices. The courtyard will be reconfigured, with a new stage built for outdoor events.
Building P is scheduled to re-open in Fall 2018. The project is funded by the Measure E Bond, which has provided $616 million for new construction, renovation and repairs at LBCC’s Pacific Coast Campus and Liberal Arts Campus.
The project architect is Steinberg Architects. A&B Construction is the general contractor. The Cordoba Corporation oversees and manages all Measure E projects.
Building P historical facts:
- It was the first complete permanent building in 1935 when the Long Beach Junior College (later renamed Long Beach City College in 1946) opened what is now known as the Liberal Arts Campus.
- The designer was noted 20th century architect Kirtland Cutter. It was one of Cutter’s last projects after a four-decade career designing hundreds of houses, hotels and offices in the Northwest and California.
- Early campus-wide events took place in the building’s courtyard, which was the first public gathering area at the campus.
- Building P originally housed facilities for the drama and debate departments and had six different stages. Building P served as a campus space for theater and musical performances until the current auditorium was built in the mid-1950s.