Quad re-construction, July 2022.
A quad reborn
Case Quad, the heart of science and engineering, undergoes its biggest makeover in nearly 50 years.
The heart of the Case campus became a construction zone this summer as an ambitious renovation of Case Quad commenced. Beginning in mid-May, temporary fencing went up at the south end of the Quad, familiar walkways closed, and backhoes and jackhammers began to tear up much of what was familiar between Bingham and the Michelson-Morley Fountain.
By the start of fall semester, the Quad will be well on its way to its new self. That means bright new cement walkways, more shade trees, a new promenade and an outdoor event space for gatherings and small concerts. The university is taking advantage of the makeover to install better Wi-Fi, more security cameras and pedestrian-friendly lighting.
“It will be somewhat transformative,” said Christopher Panichi, director of CWRU’s Department of Planning, Design and Construction.
He said the project has been on the drawing board for several years but was delayed by the pandemic. Plans call for most of the work to be completed by the fall, but parts of the project will continue through the school year.
Last reconstructed in the 1970s, the Quad poses special challenges for a project planner. The Cleveland fire department insists that main walkways be able to support fire trucks, should one ever need to reach the front of a classroom building. That’s why some walkways resembled city streets, Panichi said.
The new design will result in more traditional walkway widths and better pedestrian flow, some of it along a new Central Promenade between Strosacker Auditorium and Nord Hall.
“It will be a much more thoughtful approach,” he said.
The Michelson-Morley Fountain is staying put, bubbling on the site of old Case Main, but the fountain will be complemented by a Quad Garden closer to Bingham. While some trees had to be removed, many more are being planted this fall, Panichi said.
Alumni returning for Homecoming will glimpse the first traces of what planners expect will be a greener, brighter, more inviting heart of campus.
Engineering majors Emma Wyckoff ’21 and Ryan Buechele ’21 walk the Quad as students.
Case quad in 1973.
Rendering of the new Central Promenade.