Construction is now underway at UC Santa Barbara campus for a new lecture hall located next to Mosher Alumni House and is scheduled to continue until Fall Quarter 2020.

A 3-D model of Henley Hall shows one of the sides of the building. Courtesy of Henley Hall Model YouTube video

Henley Hall, named after its donors Jeff and Judy Henley, will be the new headquarters for the Institute for Energy Efficiency (IEE). It will serve as home to a lecture hall, 17 labs, faculty and administrative offices and a three-story open-air atrium.

The IEE focuses on the creation of new technologies and methods of energy conservation and sustainability, according to the UCSB Housing, Dining and Auxiliary Enterprises website.

Henley will be the largest hall at UCSB to date with an estimated at 49,000 gross square feet. It is now in the initial stages of development.

It will be designed to reduce its water and energy usage, along with its emissions.

“[Henley Hall] is an outgrowth of our high-priority need for lab and teaching space, and also a recognition of UC Santa Barbara’s leadership in cutting-edge research on energy efficiency,” Leslie Colasse, project manager for Henley Hall, said.

Henley is designed to maximize space and minimize the carbon footprint the building creates, according to the UCSB Design, Facilities and Safety Services website.

The building will be composed of mostly steel and concrete with terracotta roof paneling and spires to promote natural shade and cooling.

Henley is entirely donor funded, with a $56 million budget provided by the Henleys and various other anonymous donors.

The idea for the new hall came about due to growing class size, restrictive lecture hall capacity and the Institute’s growing impact on the UCSB campus, according to Associated Students (A.S.) President Brooke Kopel.

“I think it is pretty apparent on campus that there is a shortage of classroom space. The amount of resources UCSB is given, there is still students sitting on the floor… Students [are] taking midterms on floors and that just entirely unacceptable,” Kopel said.

News of Henley first reached the A.S. Main Office after complaints came in about blocked off bike paths around Campbell Hall, she added.

Henley Hall and the IEE will be the Henleys’s largest gift to UCSB. The Henleys have been involved with the UCSB campus since the early 2000s.

“Because I spent the majority of my career in the technology industry, my wife and I have been drawn to the terrific STEM programs… at UC Santa Barbara which have achieved national prominence over the decades,” Jeff Henley said in an email.

“We realized that more and more laboratory space will be critical to attracting and retaining the best faculty as well as the best students for STEM, so this is primarily why we decided to support [Henley Hall].”