LAYTON -- Weber State Davis on Thursday threw an open house for its second classroom building.
That would be building D3.
"For those who are in accelerated math, go outside and count how many buildings there are," teased Alan Hall, president of the Weber State University Board of Trustees. "Then contact your legislators."
Building D1 may not have been funded yet, but D3 more than doubles the Davis campus classroom space, adding 39 classrooms and labs. Other building features include a food court, a book store, an area for campus recreation and event space. The three-floor, 120,146-square-foot building cost $39.5 million.
Utah Lt. Gov. Greg Bell, a 1972 WSU alumnus, joked at the ribbon-cutting ceremony that he can envision Davis as WSU's primary campus.
"It will be interesting in 50 years to see which campus is bigger," he said. "This may even be the best place for a stadium, since it is not hemmed in by mountains."
In fact, more students who attend Weber State University come from Davis County than from Weber County, said Bruce Davis, WSU vice provost and dean of Continuing Education, whose offices are at the Davis campus.
"This building will help better the community by providing educational opportunities close to where students work and live," Davis said.
About 4,000 WSU students currently study on the Davis campus, many of them taking evening classes that allow students to maintain daytime jobs in the community.
D3 is the new home of the Parson Construction Management Technology program for the construction management program. It is named for Jack B. Parson, whose grandson, Alex Allen, 24 and from Harrisville, is a WSU senior in construction management.
"For once, I am excited I have a year left of school," Allen said, laughing. "I love the new concrete lab, which lets you make a batch and test it on site. I like Weber State Davis, because it caters to the working person."
Alex Schreyer, 25, Salt Lake City, said he like's the building's computer area. He and two other students sat in the first-floor lounge area, their laptops plugged into computer stations. They studied with earbuds plugged in, seemingly oblivious to the ribbon-cutting ceremony and the confetti guns firing about 15 feet away.
"It's a good building," Schreyer said. "I like all the windows, how light it is, and that you can look outside when you are studying."
D3 also will provide space for WSU's interior design program, and growing room for the nursing program. Electronics engineering courses there are in high demand for personnel stationed at nearby Hill Air Force Base.
Of the total building cost, $4.5 million was contributed by NUAMES, the Northern Utah Academy for Math, Engineering & Science. The charter school formerly occupied five classrooms and 13 portable classrooms on the WSU Davis campus. Now, NUAMES occupies 14 buildings in D3 during the day, with WSU Davis students using the rooms in the evening.
"The portables were really crowded," said Derek Williams, 17 and a NUAMES senior from South Weber. "I like the architecture, and the view from floor to floor. Being here makes it easier to learn."
Jorie-Ann Jasmin, also 17 and a NUAMES senior, gave D3 high reviews.
"I like the contemporary art and how open it is," the Syracuse resident said. "It's more like a college environment, and it's a good environment for learning."
WSU student Brady Harris, executive vice president of WSU's student association, said he was there when the Utah Legislature was considering the bill to fund the project.
"Now it's open, and I am excited for the benefits it will offer students."
Chuck Wight, WSU president, said the building was completed because of partnerships with NUAMES and with area businesses and business associations, and the support and generosity of community members.
"So many people contributed to making this a great success," he said. "I like the building's doors. These doors are the entrance to a better education. Let's make sure these doors are open wide."