Renovated Hubbell North reopens

New dining options are available on the upper level, known as Quad Creek Cafe. The lower level, renamed Spike’s Spot, features numerous amenities.

A $5 million renovation has transformed vacant, outdated rooms on the north side of Hubbell Dining Hall into a contemporary student gathering place offering opportunities for dining, socializing and recreation.

The Student Senate first proposed the renovation, which incorporates students’ suggestions for new dining options on the upper level, including a grill; stations for smoothies, pizza, subs and salads; Mexican food; and Asian/international dishes.

The lower level features a convenience store, three conference rooms and numerous amenities — large flat-screen TVs, a pool table, and Wii and PlayStation 3 game stations.

“The whole project is very functional, and the student-centered design offers so many things students can take advantage of,” says Samantha Haas, student body president.

Taking into consideration the University’s commitment to become as “green” as possible, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) principles were applied during construction. The 18,500-square-foot renovated space contains high-recycled content in building materials and furnishings, which were selected to reflect the look of the original dining hall designed by Eero Saarinen, renowned architect of the St. Louis Gateway Arch.

Saarinen’s father, Eliel, developed a master plan for campus expansion in the late 1940s. After Eliel died in 1950, Eero completed the project, giving Drake nine buildings — including the Quad Residence Halls — designed in the Saarinens’ distinctive modern industrial style.

“We did our best to match the original brick and wood, even the color of the floor tile — anything that would reinforce the same spirit that the Saarinens created in Hubbell Dining Hall,” said project architect Dan Sloan, FA’75, of Baldwin White Architects.

The hall is named after the late Grover Hubbell, longtime member and former president of the Drake University Board of Trustees. The renovation project was made possible by gifts and pledges from the Hubbell family, Hubbell Realty Co. and the Windsor Charitable Foundation, along with funding from Sodexo, Inc.

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