In a newsletter distributed in dining halls this weeks, the University told students for the first time that Memorial Hall will house a student center and the first-year dining facilities within a few years.
By September of 1995, the firstyear dining hall will be relocated from the Harvard Union to Alumni Hall in Memorial Hall, the newsletter said.
"The new first-year dining facilities will be more efficient than the current ones," said Michael P. Berry, director of dining services.
The renovated lower level of Memorial Hall will house a common area for undergraduates, which will feature a pizza and pasta eatery and a candy and frozen desert store with a combined capacity of 180.
The "focal point" of the new facilities will be a coffee house open to students from early in the morning until late at night, Berry said.
Although work on Memorial Hall will officially begin on February 14, the initial construction will involve only "minor rerouting" of students on their way to classes.
The bulk of the construction will take place over the next two summers, according to Peter Riley, the project's senior construction manager.
The Memorial Hall project will include the creation of additional dressing and rehearsal rooms for Sanders Theater, Riley said.
There will be no major external changes to the structure, except for the construction of a stairway on the west end of the building, which currently houses classrooms.
The Harvard Union building will be converted into a center for the humanities, the humanities department's equivalent of the Science Center, Dean of the College L. Fred Jewett '57 said yesterday.
"The finished result should be quite spectacular," Jewett said.