Los Angeles — About 200 guests – including university officials and friends, local dignitaries and construction partners – joined the USC Village crews on Jan. 27 to watch the raising of the ceremonial final beam as well as the eye-catching spire that is one of the project’s signature elements. The spire, which reaches 145 feet above ground, was raised to its home atop the Leavey Honors Hall as USC Trustee Kathleen Leavey McCarthy looked on. McCarthy, whose gift named the hall and the McCarthy Honors College it will house, was among those who signed the beam and spire before they were put in place.

USC Village includes 1.2 million square feet of space, more than a million feet of data cables and enough concrete to build a walkway from Los Angeles to San Francisco. With 2,700 students beds, it will allow USC to become a fully residential university.

The project is part of the most ambitious construction effort in USC history. When USC Village is finished in fall of 2017, the university will have added 3.5 million square feet of new and renovated space, increasing the size of the University Park and Health Sciences campuses by 30 percent each.

The work is a part of the Campaign for USC, a multiyear effort that seeks to raise $6 billion or more in private philanthropy to advance USC’s academic priorities and expand its positive impact on the community and world. Four years after its launch, the campaign has raised more than nearly $4.8 billion.