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Frequently Asked Questions

UC Merced's dining hall, Yablokoff-Wallace Dining Center

Why did the UC Merced campus expansion happening?

The 1.2 million gross-square-foot construction project added physical facilities in order to address existing academic and student life needs and to accommodate future access to the University.

How long did the construction last?

Construction began in October 2016 and was ccompleted in three phases.  Phase 1 ("First Delivery") was completed by Fall 2018. The second phase of facilities was completed by Fall 2019. The third and final phase was completed in Fall 2020.

How much did the project cost?

The UC Board of Regents approved a design and construction budget of $1.3 billion for the Merced 2020 Project. Of that total, $600 million came from University of California external financing. Developer Plenary Properties Merced contributed $590.35 million, and UC Merced campus funds contributed $148.13 million. For more detail on the project's structure, please visit the Project Funding page. 

What type of space was added?

In Fall 2020, the following projects were completed.  The space was designed to be durable and flexible in order to meet student and academic needs, including social space, study lounges and student group or support space.   

  • Three new academic and research buildings with faculty offices, as well as wet, dry and computational labs;
  • 1,700 student beds with ground-floor classrooms and student life facilities (e.g. study lounges, club and organization space) distributed among four buildings;
  • 1,500 parking spaces;
  • NCAA-II-level competition swimming pool;
  • Conference center;
  • Wellness center;
  • Research greenhouse;
  • Transit hub;
  • New campus entrance at Bellevue Road;
  • NCAA-II-level competition recreation field;
  • Early Childhood Education Center expansion; and 
  • A 600-seat dining facility

How did the campus and the community remain notified of construction-related news such as traffic detours, disruptions or closed areas of the campus?

Construction updates were provided at this website. Outreach to residents occurred through door-to-door fliers and face-to-face communication, as well as through campus email updates.

Whom should I contact if I have any additional questions?

This website will be the primary information resource for the project. To ask questions about the campus expansion, please send us an email at