Ground Broken on Virginia Tech’s Hitt Hall
Virginia Tech leaders and donors broke ground on Hitt Hall, a 100,000-gross-square-foot facility that will house the Myers-Lawson School of Construction, add critical dining capacity, and provide general assignment academic classroom and collaboration space.
“This building is a tribute to what is possible when academia and industry collaborate to address the workforce needs of the 21st century, supported by generous friends and alumni,” Virginia Tech President Tim Sands said. “Hitt Hall will be an appropriate home for a nationally ranked and respected school that is developing the leaders and innovators who will define the industry’s future.”
The Board of Visitors approved design and funding for the Hitt Hall project in August 2021. Located in the North Academic District and close to a new transit hub, Hitt Hall will serve thousands of students, whether for classes or meals, each day. Spring 2024 is the target for completion of construction. The building is named in recognition of a lead gift by the Hitt family, which founded one of the nation’s largest construction firms, HITT Contracting. Prior to the event Brett Hitt, co-chairman of HITT’s board of directors, reflected on the passion for education and innovation in construction felt by his father, Russell Hitt, who passed away in 2020.
“This is an exciting and inspiring moment,” Brett Hitt said. “We appreciate Virginia Tech’s leading role preparing today’s students to become tomorrow’s decision-makers in our industry.”
Hitt also noted that Virginia Tech serves as a pipeline of talent for Hitt Contracting, where numerous Hokies are employed, including company CEO Kim Roy, a member of the Class of 1999 who earned her bachelor’s degree in building construction in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies.
Leaders of several other major construction firms with strong relationships with Virginia Tech were at the event, including alumni John R. Lawson II ’75 of the W.M. Jordan Company, A. Ross Myers ’72 of Allan Myers Inc., and Preston White ’63 of Century Concrete.
“I appreciate how well Virginia Tech prepared me to succeed in industry, and it does an even better job today,” White said prior to the event. “Preparing the talent base that companies like mine are in need of is the life blood of the future — and this new building and expansion of the Myers-Lawson School of Construction will ensure a bright future for both the construction industry and Virginia Tech.”
White announced at the event that he, Brett Hitt, Lawson, and Myers recently committed to endow the Myers-Lawson School of Construction director’s position and name it in honor of Kleiner and former program leader Mike Vorster.
Julie Ross, dean of the College of Engineering, concluded the event’s formal remarks by affirming the university’s commitment to providing a cutting-edge environment for research and education.
“We take pride in preparing tomorrow’s leaders for numerous industries, with construction front and center among them,” Ross said, later adding: “With this new facility, we look forward to even more hands-on, experiential learning opportunities for our students as well as cross-disciplinary collaboration here on campus and with our industry partners.”