On this day in 2003...


The University of Minnesota's Coffman Union re-opens after four years of renovations.

Serving as a student hub for the state's largest university since the early 1940s, this round of renovations, which started in 1999, is the second major group of upgrades after round one in the 1970s.

The major focus of Ellerbee Beckett Architects when they trudged through the four-year project was to modernize the feel of the student union while also keeping the rustic feel it had upon construction.

A Starbucks, Baja Tortilla Grill, Einstein's Bagels, and a 46,000-foot student bookstore were a few of the cornerstones of the new and improved landmark, while a 400-seat movie theater also debuted.

Despite coming in $21.5 million over planned costs, those involved with the project were pleased, with student fees set to pay for the new Coffman.

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