Renovating Sittner Hall—the big picture

Why renovate Sittner Hall? 
To help us ensure our campus housing options are comfortable and safe well into the future, last year Walla Walla University hired a comprehensive higher education consulting firm that specializes in working with independent colleges and universities on master planning and facility management. Following a full review of all WWU campus housing, Sittner Hall, which has served WWU durably since 1946, was selected for the first phase of renovations.

What will the renovation include?

  1. All-new climate-control systems—air-conditioning and heating systems through the residence hall with new windows and individual temperature control systems in each room.
  2. New modular furniture (beds, desks, dressers, chairs), lighting fixtures and window shades in each room.
  3. A large, community gathering space for co-ed events such as worships, movies, and game nights.
  4. Updated in-room Wifi.
  5. Comfortable community gathering and lounge spaces on each floor.
  6. Study rooms/alcoves and seating areas throughout the residence hall for both private and group study.
  7. A centralized business center with movable tables and chairs.
  8. Revised layout that opens and enlarges the game area/Den/meeting space.
  9. A new common-core fitness area, available dues-free to all residents.
  10. Expanded kitchen facilities where residents can prepare food and beverages (cleaned daily using commercial-standard cleaning products):
    • A kitchenette in the expanded game area/Den/meeting space.
    • A full-service, open-concept community kitchen on Floor 2 featuring vending machines and a pass-through window to the outdoor entertainment space.
    • Two kitchenettes on Floor 3 and two kitchenettes on Floor 4.
  11. Upgraded restroom/shower/washing facilities, which will be cleaned daily using commercial-standard cleaning products:
    • New privacy toilets and showers, each with floor-to-ceiling privacy stalls.
    • Single-use sink/toilet rooms on Floors 1, 2 and 4.
  12. New water fountains on each hall—double the number required by code—providing filtered water and water-bottle filling stations.
  13. A fully remodeled laundry room.
  14. Hypoallergenic flooring in each room.
  15. A new closet space in each room.
  16. A full-length mirror in each room.
  17.  A new, centralized elevator for ADA accessibility at the entrance of Sittner Hall.
  18. Single-occupancy ADA rooms with ADA-designated toilets and showers.
  19. Safety control doors to better secure all living areas.
  20. New room door locking systems that add ease of access with improved technology.
  21. Better residence hall noise control with new doors and sound proofing for group areas.

Renovation renderings

Renderings as of November 2019 project planning.

When will the renovation be completed? 
Parts of the renovation will begin in spring 2020, and the 90-day renovation is slated to be completed by fall 2020.

How were students involved in the renovation planning process?
Students were invited to participate in open sessions and focus groups that included student government leaders, resident assistants, international students, upperclassmen, underclassmen, club leaders, and athletes. Students participated in six Residence Life Planning workshops in April and May 2019, and in four Design Review workshops in October 2019. Planners asked students to identify their top concerns and needs for Sittner Hall, and answers were HVAC (air conditioning and heating), showers (condition, quality and number), flexible study spaces, better student room finishes, and better kitchen facilities.

What’s the story with the sinks?
See “Sittner Hall Renovation and Sinks” 

How many students does this affect? 
Approximately 376 students call Sittner Hall home each year.

Does this renovation cost our students extra money?
This renovation is funded by the university out of already-existing budgets.

In what ways will this improve student residents’ WWU experience? 
Generations of alumni say they cherish the lifelong friends they made in the residence halls and the sense of community they found at WWU. This renovation facilitates gathering around studies, worship, food and entertainment. It also improves living conditions by addressing maintenance and temperature control issues, and updating furniture and fixtures.

How does this renovation support WWU’s mission and strategic initiatives? 
Our mission reminds us that we are a community of faith and discovery, and the residence halls are important tools to help develop and maintain the safe and healthy close-knit community that Walla Walla University is known for. This renovation not only improves personal living spaces, but it creates comfortable gathering spaces for studying, worship, food, and other events that will serve the university well into the future.

Questions, comments, concerns?

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