It is impossible to hide that Greenville University is super excited about the possibilities of the new Greenville SMART building. Official inauguration will take place February 28th, almost a year after the Groundbreaking Ceremony, which took place February 25th, 2019. Built in the 19th century, this masonic building has three floors and a vast basement that will be enjoyed by all GU students and community members. The acquisition of this piece of Greenville history shows, once again, the commitment that GU has to the small town where it is located. Soon, students and local citizens will be able to see a wide range of activities that will be carried out in what others are calling “the future Greenville heart.”
The SMART building was meticulously designed and reformed in order to be able to offer the most services possible. It was crucial to make the most out of every inch of constructible land, so that the university/community needs could be met and it would be ready for use right after the grand opening. The main floor will host a food stand where Rocket Bowls, a new restaurant idea designed by Eric Heckman, will offer delicious food never seen before in Greenville. It will also provide space for the students to work and study thanks to the super-fast internet connection. There is a video wall that will be used for things like presentations, concerts, and other events. The second floor will host an entrepreneur working space where local business ideas will flourish, and where GU students can use all the knowledge gathered to make an impact in a real-world business context. The third floor will have an installed demonstration kitchen, a podcast studio, and another video wall. This floor will be a great environment for digital media majors to work on their portfolios.
However, it has been tough for things to end up happening as planned. Especially in matters of construction and all the unexpected constraints that popped up. The Greenville SMART building was not an exception, and the future gaming room is an example of it. Currently, the gaming room is under construction. The room is not ready yet to host up to 24 fully-equipped gaming computers because of general installations that still need to be set up. Even though this might sound like a big issue, it’s not. The people working at the SMART building are working countless hours to get everything working as soon as possible.
The media provided allows us to have an idea of how the basement gaming room is going to look like. The idea, according to Coach Fink, GU E-Sports head coach, is “moving all the computers that are currently located in our gaming room [located in the basement of the Student Union] and setting them up in front of the columns [8 computers], at least until we can install the other 16.” The goal is to be able to schedule practices where all computers are being used by student-athletes looking for an opportunity to be on the E-Sports varsity team.