54 years of memories: Tutwiler Hall scheduled for destruction this summer


Ty Boyle and Lexi Crowe

Tutwiler Hall will be demolished on July 4 after 54 years as the female freshman dormitory.

The second iteration of dorms named for Julia Tutwiler, it is the only all-female dorm on campus. The first Tutwiler Hall was built near the Quad in 1914 and demolished in 1968, the same year the current iteration was built on 10th Street, now known as Paul W. Bryant Drive.

Tutwiler will be demolished in the early morning hours of July 4, so surrounding businesses are not disrupted. Advance precautions are being taken due to the presence of asbestos in the building.

“The asbestos is being removed from the building in accordance with ADEM standards and regulations. Any materials containing asbestos are being removed and disposed of in advance of the building’s implosion,” said UA spokesperson Shane Dorrill.

The Alabama Department of Environmental Management oversees environmental standards in Alabama and requires certain standards for removing hazardous materials. Due to Tutwiler being built before current asbestos regulations were put into place, the University did not have to remediate the building to meet new code regulations.

“After the implosion, there will be approximately one month of debris removal from the site,” Dorrill said. “The University will be recycling all the concrete from the building. It will be hauled to a processing plant and made into gravel that will be used on future UA projects.”

The University is currently selling pieces of the old building, including bricks and room numbers. The revenue from these sales will be used to create a new housing scholarship.

The building has not been sitting empty, despite its last class of freshman having moved out. It has been used by first responders for training since the end of the spring semester.

The new Tutwiler Hall, opening for Fall 2022 after a 3-year $145 million dollar project, will be quite different from its predecessor. The dormitory will be formed by four interconnected six-story buildings surrounding an outdoor common space. It has capacity for up to 1,284 students in double-occupancy rooms with private bathrooms. The building will also include fitness spaces and a FEMA-rated emergency shelter. Julia’s Market, a fixture of the previous Tutwiler, will remain in this iteration.