Roberts Hall demolition begins at Southern Miss

A former dormitory is coming down on the University of Southern Mississippi campus after planned demolition work began on Monday, Aug. 15.
Published: Aug. 15, 2022 at 7:43 PM CDT
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HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - A former dormitory is coming down on the University of Southern Mississippi campus after planned demolition work began on Monday, Aug. 15.

Work crews started the destruction process at 10 a.m. on Roberts Hall, originally constructed in 1968.

According to USM’s Physical Plant Director Neil Bohn, the building once served as a girls’ residence hall but has been vacant since 2010.

The university is planning to make the area a green space before turning it into an additional parking lot.

“We are way excited for this building to be taken down,” said Bohn. “It will beautify our campus. It will make way for new construction, and even passersby or anyone on 49 will see how beautiful our campus is as they are driving by.”

Bohn said the project has been in the works for about 10 years and will cost around $950,000.

“The green space will not take a large amount of time,” said Bohn. “So after this building is taken down, they will haul in topsoil, fill in the hole, put in topsoil and then they will hydroseed the area for grass. The grass will then grow, and it will be relatively low maintenance.”

He also said that final plans for the parking lot would start to take shape once renovations are finished with the new criminal justice building, which will be located next to the former Roberts Hall area.

“Instead of putting in hardscape like a parking lot immediately, green space will help the area maintain its beauty until we are done with the renovation of the criminal justice building, and then it will become the parking lot which will also have certain green space aspect to it such as shrubbery or trees, or the like,” said Bohn.

USM officials expect to complete the demolition project by November of this year.

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