In 2018, the University of Seoul (UOS) became a 100-year-old university. The university’s centennial was celebrated through special events and projects, including the construction of a new building, the Centennial Anniversary Hall. Located near the main entrance of the campus, the Centennial Anniversary Hall opened its doors to students and citizens on August 31. The UOS Times introduces some trial and errors of constructing the Centennial Anniversary Hall and some facilities situated in this building. Let us look through this monumental hall from the past to the present!
Twists and Turns in the Development of the Centennial Anniversary Hall
Campus Master Plan 2020
In 2010, UOS unveiled its “Campus Master Plan 2020;” a strategic plan that was intended to guide the development of new buildings, coexisting alongside historic and contemporary structures and sites. These new buildings to be constructed included an Engineering Building and the Centennial Anniversary Hall, which was originally referred to as the Citizens Culture Education Center before its completion. The plan also called for the renovation of existing buildings including the University Center and the Natural Science Building. However, due to budget cuts from the Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG), not all of the goals were achieved.
Despite great difficulties in securing permission to go ahead with its development plans, UOS finally got the go ahead in 2015 from SMG to build its Centennial Anniversary Hall. In 2016, the former Music Hall and Gymnasium were demolished to make way for the new structure, and a groundbreaking ceremony was subsequently held on the site.
Construction sites occuring to firece flame in night of December
By the fall of 2017, the construction of the Centennial Anniversary Hall was nearing completion. However, on December 9, 2017 a fire broke out inside the building. While the flames were quickly put out, a month-long safety inspection ensued to decipher the fire’s cause, thus delaying construction. Fire damages were repaired by early March 2018 and construction continued up until the unveiling ceremony at the end of the August summer month.
A Trip to the Centennial Anniversary Hall with The UOS Times
Before trip, The UOS Times would like to explain some structures of this building. The Centennial Anniversary Hall consists of three building structures: Ga-dong (Complex A), Na-dong (Complex B), and Da-dong (Complex C). Building structures A and C are six stories high while building structure B of the Centennial complex is eight stories high. All three structures are interconnected from the first to third floors. Now let us take a trip into the Centennial Anniversary Hall!
First floor: Indoor Sports!
Gymnasium located on first floor of this building
When going two floors of stairs down, visitors can find a new Gymnasium, which was sponsored by Woori Bank. Upon entering the basketball court, you will see a massive electronic scoreboard, spectator seats, and even an amplifier to cheer on the home team. You will also see a handball court to the side of this multifunctional sports facility, which also contains a fitness room and a space for practicing golf swings. However, one frustrating thing is that the reservation system for these facilities has yet to appear on the UOS gymnasium webpage (physical.uos.ac.kr). The UOS Times hopes that this minor problem will be corrected in the near future.
Ga-dong (Complex A): The New Archives of UOS
UOS Archive located on fourth floor of Complex A
Upon entering the fourth floor of Ga-dong, you will come across the new university archive. Within the archive, one will see a detailed timeline of the development of UOS. Pictures and explanations chronicling important campus events await visitors to the archive. Some of the photos date back to the early years of UOS when our university was known as Kyung Sung Public Agricultural College. The archive also has a video room where you can watch interesting documentaries, including video interviews recently made with alumni who graduated in the 1960s. These video interviews provide us with some interesting insights into campus life and the learning environment during that period of time. Interestingly, the video room is designed to resemble a lecture room from that era.
Na-dong (Complex B): A New Library and Symbols of a more Eco-friendly Campus
Solar panels installed on Na-dong
When looking at the exterior of Complex B, you will notice that one side of the structure is covered with solar panels. As in the case of several other university buildings, the presence of these panels shows the university’s commitment to transforming itself into an eco-friendly, sustainable campus.
Within Complex B, you will see a new medium-size library. The Centennial Anniversary Hall Library is a welcome addition to the three existing libraries located elsewhere on campus. Unlike the other libraries, this one offers students opportunities to watch movies and listen to music using new multimedia devices. DVD discs are arranged on shelves similar to the many books one will find. Also, eight study rooms are situated in this library. These would be helpful for preparing team projects and studying for exams with peers. Note that if you want to use this facility, you must reserve to librarians who is in front of the entrance of this library and put a student identification card (ID card) who would be representative of reservation to them. When finishing up the project and leaving this room, do not forget to take back your ID card! Another interesting feature of the new library is the presence of large windows facing gardens with many flowers and other plants. If you feel tired from your studies you can exit this section of the library to enjoy some fresh air and relax. The UOS Times highly recommends students to make a trip to this new library.
A new library on Na-dong
Beside these facilities, Complex C in the Centennial Anniversary Hall houses offices and lecture rooms for the Institute of Continuing Education (ICE), the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC), and the Department of Music. The Centennial Anniversary Hall offers memories of the past, enjoyment of the present, and the promises of a delightful future. The UOS Times hopes to visit this monumental building, not only with students and faculties on UOS but with those on other universities, citizens of Seoul, and even foreigners who want to study and travel into UOS.