Coover Hall

Built: 1948–1953; architect, Brooks, Borg
Addition: 1959, architect, Leonard Wolf
Renovation: 1999
Departments housed in Coover Hall: Electrical and Computer Engineering

Building History

The Electrical Engineering Building was constructed over a period of five years beginning in 1948. Separate contracts were drawn up for the completion of the third floor in 1950 and the auditorium and freight elevator installation in 1952. All the contracts were completed by the spring of 1953.

The new building contained a variety of labs and research facilities to keep up with rapid developments in electronics and computers. Each floor held an array of labs in machines, circuits, and electrical measurement, as well as industrial X-ray and electronics research equipment.

Just four years after the new building was finished, the department needed even more space—this time to house the new Cyclotron computer, which was near completion in 1957. An addition to the west end of the south wing of the building in 1959 solved the space problem, and the 10-by-12-foot Cyclone Computer remained there until the mid 1960s, when it was retired and replaced by a newer model.

Significant renovation once again took place in 1999 with the creation of the Active Learning Complex in the high-bay area of Coover Hall. This 3,000-square-foot complex includes several interaction areas with high-tech computer and learning equipment for undergraduate students and office space for teaching assistants.

A unique feature of the Electrical Engineering Building is the wall-sized mural in the entrance lobby. Donated by Westinghouse Electric Corporation in 1951, it was originally a photo montage of a number of structures and machines associated with the field. In 1993, the mural was updated for a more modern rendition of engineering tools and ideas.

The Electrical Engineering Building was renamed Coover Hall in 1969 in honor of Mervin Sylvester Coover, who was a former department chair and faculty member from 1935 to 1954.

ECpE Building Addition

Built: 2006-2008, architects, OPN Architects (architect of record) and Ellenzweig (design architect and laboratory planner)

Departments housed in ECpE Building Addition: Electrical and Computer Engineering

A new 23,000-square-foot building, the ECpE Building Addition, was constructed beginning in 2006. The building was completed and opened in 2008. The ECpE Building Addition houses all classrooms and academic labs, as well as several research laboratories for the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECpE).

The department is currently raising funds to renovate the remaining portion of Coover Hall and build a second new addition, which is Phase II of the ECpE Building Addition project. Phase II will add 33,000 square feet of new space to house academic advising and senior design activities, as well as space for faculty offices and additional research labs. An atrium also will be created by enclosing the courtyard with a glass roof. The atrium will provide a place for students and faculty to gather.

The ECpE Building Addition is funded by private donors and state funds. The project, including Phase II, will cost an estimated $38.8 million.