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New San Diego Library has Aztec Roots

Darren Greenhalgh, '84, '05, supervised the $187-million project.
Greenhalgh served as project manager of the new downtown library  from the beginning. Photo courtesy of Turner Construction.
Greenhalgh served as project manager of the new downtown library from the beginning. Photo courtesy of Turner Construction.

The guiding hand of an Aztec is behind the $187-million San Diego Central Library that opened this week at 330 Park Boulevard.

Darren Greenhalgh, ’84, ’05, has supervised the project for more than a decade in his role as deputy director of engineering & capital projects for the City of San Diego.

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Darren Greenhalgh at the grand opening of the San Diego Central Library.
The 500,000-square-foot building, which was dedicated Sept. 28, includes 400 computing devices, 22 study rooms, a 350-seat auditorium, a children’s library, teen center and homework center, as well as on-site parking for 250.

The San Diego Public Library system has also introduced a new logo to coincide with the opening of the central library. Designed by SDSU students Lauren Fickling and Miranda Heber, the logo brings to mind the central library’s iconic dome, which is becoming a prominent feature in the San Diego skyline.

Cohesive team

Greenhalgh served as project manager from the beginning, supervising the site selection process, managing the design process and chairing the selection panel that recommended Turner Construction to build the library.

Controlling costs was a primary concern, as was working with the San Diego City Council to maintain support for the central library throughout the duration of the project.

“I’m proud of how the city team, the consultant team and the project team worked together cohesively for so many years,” Greenhalgh said.

Having completed what was the largest project of his career to date, Greenlagh is now tackling one nearly three times as massive—the expansion of the San Diego Convention Center, estimated at $520 million and scheduled to be completed in 2018.

Aztec family

Greenhalgh studied civil engineering at SDSU, and returned for an MBA two decades later. His father, Donald, was a 1960 graduate of the College of Business; his daughter, Brittany, graduated in May with a degree in psychology; and his son, Kyle, is a current student majoring in civil engineering.

He and his wife, Teresa, are active members of the Aztec Parents Board.

"I thought SDSU was a great school when I went there in the early 1980s," Greenhalgh said. "It was better when I went back in the early 2000s, and it is even better now for my kids. There are so many more opportunities now than 30 years ago, and I couldn’t imagine sending my children any where else."

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