If there’s one constant on campus it’s construction. It seems Penn State is continually tearing down old buildings, erecting new ones, and renovating ones that can be salvaged. Much of campus has changed since 1938 with only a handful of buildings like Old Main, Sparks Building, and Atherton Hall remaining the same.
Luckily, thanks to various government agencies like the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, we now have access to high altitude aerial photography of Penn State dating back to 1938 and into the 1970s and 1990s. Eventually the transition to satellite technology allowed for more frequent and higher resolution imagery of campus, but here are a few GIFs and a video combining the two types of imagery showing how campus changed and grew through the years.
This shot shows Beaver Stadium, the Bryce Jordan Center, Medlar Field at Lubrano Park, and the Pegula Ice Arena being built through the years. Beaver Stadium was moved to the east side of campus in 1960 and subsequently expanded in 1972, 1976, 1978, 1980, 1985, and 1991. The Bryce Jordan Center opened in 1995. The two most recent additions are Medlar Field at Lubrano Park which was completed in 2006 and the Pegula Ice Arena which was completed in 2013.
Here’s the west side of campus through the years, featuring the original site of Beaver Field before it was moved to the east side of campus. The Information Sciences and Technology Building (IST Bridge) or Westgate Building was completed in 2004.
In 1953, HUB construction began with several expansions and renovations occurring over the years. Shortlidge Road can be seen cutting through campus before it got split by the Shortlidge Mall and the Life Sciences Building in 2004. The Millennium Science Complex is the most recent addition to this area, which was completed in 2011.
Between North Halls and East Halls used to be Lot 80 which has since been replaced by the Business Building (2005). The Katz Building, home of the Law School, opened in 2009.
Here’s a complete video slideshow of Penn State’s campus expansion: