The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

DVC to forge ahead with new buildings



Despite state budget difficulties, course elimination, and staff layoffs, DVC hopes to create an improved academic environment for students, as well as the planet. 

The DVC campus will continue to undergo some major cosmetic and structural changes as a new building project is scheduled to begin early next year. The $54 million project is called “The Future of the Commons,” and includes the construction of two brand new buildings, which, once completed, will total approximately 86,000 square feet of building space. 

The buildings will be located in what is currently the Main Quad and student service center. The student service center and cafeteria, the school’s two oldest structures, will be demolished, in order to make room for the construction and the new Main Quad area.

With the addition of the new buildings, “all student services will be in one location, and the Hotel and Restaurant Management program will have access to new, state of the art facilities.” said Chris Leivas, vice president of finance and administration. 

“Students will have a modern, attractive, and welcoming food service facility, as well as a new, open space for a social student community on campus,” Leivas said.

 “This is probably the biggest thing to happen to DVC since its beginning in 1952,” said Buildings and Grounds Manager Guy Grace. 

DVC student, Sidney Seltcer, 18, expressed her concerns toward the loss of the Main Quad. “Yeah, I wait for my sister [in the quad] on Mondays and Thursdays,” she said. “I have no idea where [I will go.] Maybe the library, but it will probably be packed.” 

Funding for this project comes solely from a bond that was voted on by Contra Costa County taxpayers in 2002 and 2006, making this a property tax funded project.

 “No budgets used to support classroom instruction or student services will be impacted by this project,” Leivas said. “In the long run, this project will reduce our ongoing operating expenses. The space will be much more energy efficient so our energy usage will go [down].” 

The project is expected to achieve LEED green, gold status. This certification will be a result of the buildings’ many environmentally friendly features, including synergies between buildings and landscapes, including the recycling of water for such things as plumbing and gardening. 

The buildings will also utilize a state of the art heating and ventilating system, which will help lower the school’s yearly energy costs. Currently heat and energy usage are one of the school’s highest costs. 

Construction for this project is set to begin December 2010. The first stages will be primarily infrastructure work and will include the redirection of electrical wire and large pipes. During construction, students will officially lose access to a large part of the Main Quad.

 “Our plan is to avoid [class] interruptions,” said Grace, “[but] there is a good chance there are going to be [some. I have to be realistic in what we are dealing with. This is a very big project.”

According to Grace, a goal for project completion has been set for three to four years.

“I am very excited about this project,” said Leivas, “It will create a new heart to this campus.”


Contact Parjanya Holtz at [email protected] and Christian Magdaleno at [email protected] 

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DVC to forge ahead with new buildings