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News / City Life

USC is building a dining hall that will make you think you're at Hogwarts

Bovard Administration Building
Photograph: Philip Channing, Photo courtesy USC Bovard Administration and Alumni Park.

The $700 million development at the University of Southern California known as USC Village, expected to open in time for the fall 2017 school year, will include housing for 2,700 students, along with expansive new mixed-use space with retail tenants including a Trader Joe’s and a Solé bike shop. One of the most buzzed-about features, however, will be located within the exclusive Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Foundation Honors Hall: A large new student dining hall designed in the Collegiate Gothic style that is already earning comparisons to the dining hall at Harry Potter’s Hogwarts.

Serving the Kathleen L. McCarthy Honors College and feeding 600 of the most academically excellent freshman entering the University who will be given the privilege of living in the new Honors Hall, the dining hall is long and narrow with large arched windows at the end. Early peeks at the still-under-construction space have it bearing a strong resemblance to the Hutchinson Commons at the University of Chicago or Annenberg Hall at Harvard.

A more imaginative take would compare the new dining hall and clock tower to the Great Hall of Hogwarts Castle from the Harry Potter series, though lacking the hovering candles or mail delivered by owl (or so we assume, anyway).

Details of the project can be found in USC’s statement about the development, slated to be the largest retail complex of its kind in South L.A. The site will also include a large new fitness center and a “fan experience” called Trojan Town for those attending sports events at the adjacent Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. The $700 million budget for USC Village comes from a combination of sources, including a $30 million donation by the Leavey Foundation, according to ABC7.


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