The University of Texas at Austin


Frequently Asked Questions

Engineering Education and Research Center

Below is a list of FAQs regarding EERC construction around the engineering plaza. We will continue adding FAQs to this list throughout the project duration. If you have additional questions, please contact Cockrell School project manager Leland Snell, or Associate Dean for Research John Ekerdt.

What is the EERC?
The Engineering Education and Research Center (EERC) is a state-of-the-art teaching and research facility that will replace the Engineering-Science Building (ENS). This 430,000-square-foot building will house the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering in the south tower, and interdisciplinary research laboratories and offices in the north tower. The Office of Student Affairs, the Richard W. McKinney Engineering Library, project-based teaching laboratories and collaborative learning areas will be located in the central atrium of the building.
What is the timeline for construction?
Construction will progress in two stages. In stage one, the school will prepare the site by relocating utilities and renovating the first floor of Ernest Cockrell Jr. Hall (ECJ) to accommodate the experimental labs for the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. This stage will begin on Nov. 11, 2013. Stage two involves the demolition of ENS and the construction of the EERC. Construction of the EERC is slated to begin Sept. 1, 2014 and is expected to be completed in time for the fall 2017 semester.
How soon will students, faculty and staff see changes?
The first and most immediate change involves moving the McKinney Engineering Library to the Perry-Castañeda Library (PCL), and relocating some student organization offices from the first floor of Ernest Cockrell Jr. Hall (ECJ) to ENS beginning on Oct. 25, 2013. In mid-November, fences will begin to appear on the perimeter of ENS, so utility work can begin in adjacent areas. F-lot 25 will be closed. In spring 2014, two temporary buildings — the Center for Strategic Advising (CSA) and the Academic Annex (ACA) — will be moved near the construction site. The occupants of ENS will move out during the summer of 2014.
What will happen to the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering?
The department administrative offices will be relocated to the UT Administration Building (UTA), which is at 16th and Guadalupe streets. While details are still pending, the undergraduate advising offices and student groups will likely be moved into ACA, and most of the faculty members and the graduate students in ENS will be relocated to UTA. Some of the faculty and students will be move into nearby buildings.
Where will ECE classes be held?
We are in the process of confirming locations. Every effort will be made to offer the core undergraduate courses in the northeast quadrant of campus near the engineering buildings. The graduate classes and some of the undergraduate elective classes may be offered closer to UTA. The area currently occupied by the McKinney Engineering Library in ECJ will be renovated, and the teaching laboratories will be moved to this location.
Where will ENS classroom space eventually be housed?
During EERC construction the teaching laboratories will be in ECJ. The Cockrell School is working with the Office of the Registrar to determine where lecture classes will be held.
Where will the student organizations’ offices be relocated?
Some student organizations will be relocated to ACA, and some will be relocated to ENS. Other organizations will be moved to not-yet-determined locations as they become available.
Where will the McKinney Engineering Library be relocated?
The library will close on Friday, Oct. 25, and will be relocated to the sixth floor of PCL until the completion of the EERC, which is expected to be completed in time for the fall 2017 semester. The McKinney Engineering Library reserves and textbooks will be moved to the John M. Kuehne Physics Mathematics Astronomy Library (PMA), in RLM 4.200 on Oct. 26. For more, visit the UT Libraries webpage about the relocation.
What does the construction mean for students, faculty and staff?
Construction fences will block some walking paths, and the parking lot behind ENS and ECJ will be closed.
What renovations will ECJ undergo?
The first floor of ECJ will house the ECE teaching laboratories during construction of the EERC and then will be converted into classrooms. A suite of interview rooms will be built on the ECJ’s second floor. Teaching and learning space will be built for the Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering (CAEE) on the second floor of ECJ.
Are any groups moving multiple times?
Some groups will move multiple times but this will primarily be staff members who do not work directly with students.
How is construction going to affect the availability of classrooms and classes?
The classrooms in ENS will not be available after August 2014. We do not expect the move will affect the availability of classes but it will affect their locations.
How will the construction affect the surrounding area (parking lots/spaces reserved for construction, sidewalk accessibility, etc.)?
A fence will block the space between the J.T. Patterson Laboratories Building and Robert Lee Moore Hall (RLM) on the south and north, and Speedway and the ENS site on the west and east, respectively. Presently, F-lot 25 will be closed permanently. Some spaces on Speedway may be blocked from time to time to move equipment onto the site. Sidewalk accessibility and walkways will be provided around the fenced area.
What does this mean for me as an ECE student?
Student advisers will be located in a temporary building within the engineering complex. Laboratory classes will be held in ECJ. ECE administrative offices will be relocated to UTA. ECE students will have to walk to other campus buildings for classes that would normally be held in ENS. Faculty offices will be relocated to two main campus locations, and extra time will be needed to commute to those offices for meetings.
What does the mean for me as an engineering student who has classes in the ECJ?
Students will still be able to enter the main west entrance on the second level of ECJ. There will be construction happening inside and around the building, but that should not interfere with classes. Woolrich Laboratories will be outside of all construction fences and access to and services within will not be impacted.
What does this mean for a general engineering student?
The Engineering Career Assistance Center (ECAC) offices will be move to a temporary location in the engineering complex, and the engineering library will be moved to the PCL.
Will this affect the availability of professors? TAs?
This should not affect the availability of professors or teaching assistants, but students may have to walk a bit further to visit them.
What is happening to the portable buildings (ACA and CSA)?
The portable buildings will be moved west of ENS but will remain within the engineering complex. The buildings will be used to house groups and offices displaced by EERC construction.
Will there be utility outages?
Yes. There will be scheduled utility outages that have not yet been determined. Notifications for the first schedule of utility outages will be made in December 2013.
Will staff and faculty have access to ENS and ECJ loading docks?
Yes. Because of ongoing construction, there will be limited access to ENS and ECJ loading docks. Use of the loading docks will need to be coordinated with building maintenance.
When will the EERC be finished?
The current plan calls for occupancy in time for classes in the fall of 2017.

Construction Fences Up

Construction fences have been placed around the entire Engineering Plaza.

Please view the walking map above for paths between buildings.

The fencing between Ernest Cockrell Jr. Hall (ECJ) and the Engineering-Science Building (ENS) will remain up through Sept. 1, 2014. All front and back entrances to ECJ and ENS will remain open.

The fencing along the perimeter between J.T. Patterson Laboratories Building (PAT) and Robert Lee Moore Hall (RLM) will remain in place throughout construction of the EERC.

Please view the diagram below for the construction fence schedule.

EERC Town Hall Presentation

town hall image

View and download the presentation that was given at the EERC Town Hall Meeting on Oct. 11.