Tutwiler Hall is named after Julia Tutwiler, who was known as the mother of coeducation in Alabama. Tutwiler successfully lobbied The University of Alabama Board of Trustees to allow female students admittance to the University. The first women, Bessie Parker and Anna Adams, were admitted in 1893. Julia Tutwiler was also a successful advocate for prison reform in Alabama, and she wrote the official state song.
The Tutwiler Hall being demolished on July 4 is the second iteration of Julia Tutwiler Hall. It has housed more than 50,000 women since its opening in 1968. The building has 13 floors, although there was no 13th floor. Elevators skipped from floor 12 to floor 14 due to superstition. The building’s most recent bed capacity was 1,000.
A comprehensive evaluation of the building determined that a renovation would not be cost-effective, so UA built a new Tutwiler Hall next to the old building.
The new Tutwiler Hall, which will open in August, has a bed capacity of 1,284 and will feature state-of-the-art furnishings and amenities, with a hybrid community-apartment style setup of double-capacity bedrooms. Each room will feature two twin beds with a shared private bathroom. The building will also feature public community spaces with TVs and white boards, outdoor social spaces, laundry rooms on each floor, a fitness area, craft room and large storm shelter which will also serve as a multipurpose room. Watch this video to see what the new Tutwiler will look like.
The outdoor space will also feature a Tutwiler Promenade with personalized pavers purchased by alumni and friends.
Tutwiler Hall has been and will remain an all-women residence hall that primarily houses freshmen.
The first Tutwiler Hall was built on the UA campus in 1914 and was demolished in the late 1960s. Rose Administration Building now occupies that area.
The implosion, scheduled for 7 a.m., Monday, July 4, will be handled by D.H. Griffin Wrecking Company from Birmingham and Dykon Explosive Demolition Corporation from Bixby, Oklahoma.
About 1,600 holes have been drilled in the structural columns of the building where about 500 pounds of dynamite will be placed. Once detonated, the building will come down in about 20 seconds.
A small public viewing area will be available on the top floor of the Magnolia Parking Deck at 800 Paul W. Bryant Dr. The public should access the deck by taking Bryant Drive to 6th Ave. Parking will be available on the first two floors of the parking deck and in the surface lots around the deck. Dust masks will be provided to spectators who watch the implosion from the Magnolia Parking Deck.
The following streets will be closed beginning at 5 a.m., Monday, July 4:
- Avenue to Wallace Wade Avenue.
- 10th Avenue from 12th Street to Paul W. Bryant Drive.
- 12th Street from 8th Avenue to 10th Avenue.
- 8th Avenue from Paul W. Bryant Drive to 12th Street.
- Colonial Drive from Paul W. Bryant Drive to Judy Bonner Drive.
- Magnolia Drive from Paul W. Bryant Drive to Judy Bonner Drive.
The following streets will be closed beginning at 5 a.m. to westbound traffic at 7th Avenue:
- 10th Alley.
- 11th Street.
- 11th Alley.
All streets will begin reopening after the implosion.
The University of Alabama, part of The University of Alabama System, is the state’s flagship university. UA shapes a better world through its teaching, research and service. With a global reputation for excellence, UA provides an inclusive, forward-thinking environment and nearly 200 degree programs on a beautiful, student-centered campus. A leader in cutting-edge research, UA advances discovery, creative inquiry and knowledge through more than 30 research centers. As the state’s largest higher education institution, UA drives economic growth in Alabama and beyond.