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A look inside the ongoing renovations at Boudreau Hall

On Friday, Sept. 22, the Maine Campus met with University of Maine System (UMS) Associate Project Manager Logan Doucette to experience a behind-the-scenes look at the ongoing construction in Boudreau Hall. Formerly known as North Stevens Hall, Karen L. Boudreau, Esq. Hall was officially renamed in July 2022 after a generous donation by UMaine alumna Karen Boudreau and her husband, Thomas Jensen.

Thanks largely in part to this gift money, the two-story home to the Cohen Institute for Leadership and Public Service, Equal Opportunity, International Affairs, the Political Science Department and the School of Policy and International Affairs is experiencing some much-needed updates as one of the oldest buildings on the Orono campus. 

Doucette, a 2022 UMaine graduate of the Construction Engineering Technology program, is currently working on between 35 and 40 projects in his role at UMS and generously took time out of his busy schedule to share his excitement about the many ongoing and upcoming upgrades taking place across the university.

Although Boudreau Hall very much resembles a construction zone four weeks into the fall semester, Doucette says the roughly $700,000 project is expected to wrap up before finals are over.

“Our schedule at this point is driven by procurement more so than the actual labor that’s happening here. Really what that amounts to is vendors and lead times on materials,” said Doucette.

Perhaps the most significant addition, as well as the most costly, is the addition of two gender-neutral bathrooms on the first floor of the hall. Those visiting Boudreau in the past had the option of using either the bathroom in the basement or on the second floor, neither of which was compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). One of the newly constructed bathrooms will be ADA-accessible, but the other will not be due to size limitations. Doucette added that the existing basement and second-floor bathrooms will largely remain the same other than being tied into the plumbing and electrical work occurring on the first floor.

In the hallways of the first and second floors, new ceilings and light fixtures are being installed, along with heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems to meet code requirements. In regard to the new systems, Doucette explained, “The unit that we’re putting in is called an ERV. It’s essentially an air exchanger, so it’s bringing in new air from outside and blowing out old air to really just get a better flow.”

Multiple conference spaces, as well as the Cohen Institute room on the second floor, will sport high-end furniture that will allow for interactive learning to occur, especially in the Cohen Institute, where students gather regularly. “It was emphasized in the design concept that this [the Cohen Institute] would be a collaborative type of learning space for students.” 

This particular room will also be the only one to have double doors made of glass installed to allow for natural lighting to enter more easily into the corridor from the exterior windows.

Overall, the design plans aim to maintain the original feel of the building, which can occasionally result in longer lead times for various materials needed to meet this expectation. Longer wait times, Doucette believes, are worth it in order to ensure that Boudreau Hall receives all  necessary updates without altering its ambiance.

The renovations in Boudreau Hall are just one of the many ongoing facilities-related projects at the University of Maine. To view updates from the Office of Facilities Management, visit

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