The major renovation and expansion at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry, with construction beginning in fall 2018, updates and expands the school’s state-of-the-art facilities for teaching dental students, serving patients from around Michigan and conducting world-class research that advances the dental profession.
Highlights from the Ground Breaking Ceremony
This renovation and expansion allows the school to incorporate the latest developments in patient care, dental education and research into the existing facility, which was designed during two eras – the 1930s and 1960s – when technology and priorities were much different than they are today. The plan, given final approval by the U-M Board of Regents on March 29, 2018, renovates about half of the existing building and adds 48,000 square feet.
A new main entrance and redesigned registration area will flow directly to predoctoral dental clinics, which will all be on one floor for a more streamlined and efficient entry to the school and appointments. Patients utilizing specialty clinics elsewhere in the building will find improved wayfinding signage, pathways and elevators that allow them to more easily navigate to their appointments. Larger, improved dental operatories and the latest technological improvements in dental equipment will allow students and faculty to maintain the innovative treatment that has long marked U-M as one of the top-ranked dental schools in the world. The latest advances in electronic health records, developed for the School of Dentistry, will aid in more efficient care for patients. A new clinic for patients with special needs will provide specialized equipment and practices to serve patients with a wide variety of physical and mental limitations, such as developmental disabilities, cognitive impairments, blindness or hearing loss, complex medical problems, stress disorders related to military service or vulnerable conditions unique to the elderly.
The north entrance, nearest the Fletcher Parking Structure, is being redesigned with a covered, drive-through access. Patients and others will still be able to use the building’s south entrance, along North University Avenue, but it will be significantly modified. Pedestrians will no longer walk under the overhanging Student Commons study area to reach the courtyard and existing south entry doors. Instead, a ground-level addition will be closed in under the Commons to create seminar and common space. A new south entrance will direct patients toward the registration area and clinics on the north side of the building.
Many of the benefits for patients are also benefits for students and faculty, particularly the larger dental operatories that will allow more access for the practice of modern dentistry and to accommodate the team of specialists who provide individualized interprofessional care. Centralized equipment dispensaries and sterilization services will help students provide more efficient patient care, as will the revised design of the clinic areas. Technology improvements will include operatories with video capability for creating instructional videos.
Research needs, equipment and the collaborative process of scientists have changed significantly in the five decades since the existing research tower was built. A three-story addition, with two floors dedicated to research, will rise out of the current courtyard to provide a new benchmark for scientific research facilities. An open, adaptable floor-plan for lab space will allow researchers to better collaborate. Graduate students, research assistants and faculty will have more common areas – from their lab benches to write-up spaces to break areas – where they can easily meet to discuss existing projects and inspire new ideas.
Major upgrades of the heating, air conditioning and ventilation needs of the school are part of the project.
Construction will be coordinated in several major phases to allow the school to continue its educational, clinical and research mission during the renovation, with completion expected sometime in early 2022.
We welcome your involvement with the renovation and expansion project. We have developed programs for corporate sponsorship and donor and alumni recognition. Please email us for details at: email@example.com.
First Dentistry Building 1875-1877
Dentistry Building, 1877-1891
Dentistry Building, 1891-1908
North University Building, 1908-1969
Kellogg Building added, 1940-present
Current North University Building, 1969-present