California Lutheran University (CLU) has commenced work on a $15 million Dining Commons for its Thousand Oaks campus.

The two-level, environmentally friendly building will be built where the Student Union Building and Pavillion currently stand, school officials said. Demolition of the existing buildings will begin next month.

The first floor of the Dining Commons, which is slated for completion in Spring 2014will house a coffee bar and student lounge. The second floor will include a market and main dining area complete with a pizza oven, pasta bar, grill, soup and salad bar dessert bar, deli station and international food station.

Originally, plans for the building were scaled back to a $13 million budget, but a 2 million donation from the Ullman Foundation allowed the University to move forward with its original design, which includes glass walls and a “more attractive roof and entryway,” university officials said in a prepared statement.

The Ullman foundation represents CLU Regent George “Corky” Ullman Jr., Steve Ullman, Cody Ullman and Chad Ullman, all of which are CLU alumni.

The old dining area will house the Student Union Building with offices for the student affairs staff.

Angela Melero