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Physical Science Building
Physical Science Building
Physical Science Building
Built in 1961, the physical science building was part of a major campus expansion in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The science departments moved from Ayres Hall, which had also been the location of the music and speech programs, into a new complex that housed the Physical Science and the Agriculture Departments. A state architect designed the new facility. As the student population continued to increase in the late 1960s, many new buildings were created and additions were attached to existing buildings. In 1969, an extensive addition to the physical science building created a new total of nearly 83,000 square feet of space. Today, the building houses the Chemistry, Physics and Geosciences Departments.
 
Acker Gymnasium
Selvester's Cafe
Acker Gymnasium. Photo courtesy of CSU, Chico IMC.
Completed in 1961, the Arthur L. Acker Gymnasium totals nearly 77,000 square feet and includes basketball courts, swimming pools, weight training rooms, a dance studio, locker rooms, offices and classrooms. The building was designed using a state architect, and the general contractor was Gordon H. Ball of Concord, California. At a cost of 1.7 million dollars, Acker Gym was built to expand the men's faculties from Shurmer Gymnasium. Acker gym started out as the men's facility and by the 1970s was used as a coed gym.

Art Acker served as coach and chair of the Department of Physical Education from 1923 to 1961. Except for wrestling and skiing, he coached every sport offered by Chico State. Acker developed Chico State sports into a program with direction and also created the Wildcat mascot. He pressed for a new building to replace the small 1927 gym.

 
Modoc Hall
Modoc hall
Modoc Hall. Photo courtesy of CSU, Chico IMC.
Built in the area where Chico State's first gymnasium had been located, the new building housed both the Education and Psychology Departments. Completed in 1962, the facility cost nearly 1.2 million dollars. Designed by the architectural firm John Carl Warnecke and Associates of San Francisco, the facility included classrooms, offices, an observation room and laboratories. In April of 1972, the building was named Modoc Hall, after Modoc County. After the psychology department moved out, the building was remodeled in the late 1970s. Today, the building houses the child development department and the education department.
 
Performing Arts Center
 
At a cost of over three million dollars, a state architect designed the Performing Arts Center. The building, totaling more than 111,000 square feet, includes rehearsal rooms, classrooms, an instrument repair workshop and three theaters. The Art Department, Music Department and Theater Arts use this facility. Dedication ceremonies for the building took place on May 19, 1967.

The 527-seat theater located inside the Performing Arts Building is named in honor of Harlen Adams. A faculty member from 1939 to 1974, Adams also served as the Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences and for a time as the Dean of the School of Education. In 1967 he became a faculty member of the Department of Speech and Drama. Adams was active in community affairs and also traveled around the world.

The pipe organ (also known as the centennial organ) in Harlen Adams Theater was built between the years of 1984 to 1988. Master organ builder, Munetaka Yokota, designed and constructed the organ which has over 2,200 pipes. The project was under the supervision and direction of David Rothe, organist and professor of music at Chico State. Originally slated to be located in Laxson Auditorium it resides stage right.

 
Langdon Hall
 
In 1965, plans for a new engineering building were being finalized. A state architect and one of Chico State's own engineering faculty, Herbert Langdon, worked on the design of the building. With over 58,000 square feet of engineering labs, computer labs, classrooms and office space, the building was designed to house the newly created Engineering Department. To make space for the engineering building, the university acquired a block of the Rio Chico subdivision west of Warner Street. This was one of the first times that the university expanded by removing homes near the campus. Building costs totaled two million dollars and construction was undertaken by the construction firm Christensen and Foster of Santa Rosa. Completed in 1967, the engineering building was a sign of the growing importance technology had in society.

Herbert F. Langdon had an integral role in shaping the Engineering Department at Chico State. Langdon joined the university faculty in 1946 after working as an engineer both privately and in the military. As chair of the Applied Arts and Sciences department, from 1952 to 1963, he fostered an increase in engineering classes. Langdon founded a new engineering division in 1963 and chaired the department until his death in 1965. His wife, Virginia, continued to worked in the university library.

The Herbert F. Langdon Engineering Center was dedicated on May 20, 1967. Starting in the 1950s, the California State Colleges named buildings in recognition of people. Langdon Hall was the first building on the Chico State campus to be named in honor of a person who made an impact on the college and the community. The building and the engineering department are unique because both were created, in large part, because of one man's vision.

 
Whitney Hall
 
Construction began in September 1967 on this coed residency hall. Designed by architectural firm Rockwise and Watson, the nine-story building is the tallest on campus, and was hailed as the tallest building north of Sacramento during construction. With the help of a 3.2 million dollar federal loan, the residency hall was built to easy the student housing demand. The total cost to complete the building was 3.5 million dollars. With over 116,000 square feet, the residency hall can house 528 students and includes dining facilities. Dedication for the building, named for Mt. Whitney, took place on October 25, 1969.
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Written and compiled by Mary Ellen Bailey
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