The history behind the Arthur G. Paul Quadrangle

By Charles Wagner / Asst. Features Editor

A blast from the past (Digital Library Archives / Special to Viewpoints)

By Charles Wagner / Asst. Features Editor

The A. G. Paul Quadrangle at Riverside City College has been the heart of the campus since 1924.

The “Quad” is named after Arthur G. Paul, who designed the structure, while G. Stanley Wilson, a local Riverside architect, is responsible for the construction.

In addition to the Quadrangle, Wilson designed most of Riverside’s schools as well as many other impressive buildings around Southern California.

Wilson’s style was influenced by the 17th and 18th century Spanish and Italian architecture.

The Board of Education accepted Wilson’s plans for the construction of high school and college buildings on Feb. 12, 1923, which allowed the school to begin purchasing lots directly south of Terracina Drive.

At the time of construction, barely $100,000 was available for the work, and the estimated cost of the project was about $700,000.

After resolving funding issues, they began to construct the Quad on Sept. 26, 1923.

By July 17, 1924 the minutes of the Board of Education reported that the junior college buildings were officially accepted.

With this accomplishment, Riverside earned the distinction of having established the first two public junior college buildings in California.

Improvements to the Quad continued, and was expanded in 1928.  In 1932 the construction was halted until after the conclusion of World War II.

The Quad completion project began in 1949 and continued into Jan. of 1951 with the dedication of the south west addition.  

Students and professors are still raving about the Quad today.

Kelly Douglass, associate professor of English at RCC, says the Quadrangle has a lot to offer students.

“The best thing about the Quad is the original design,” she said. “That central space in the middle is such a perfect place for students to gather.”

Student Trustee Nick Bygon reflected on the Quad.

“As an institution, structures like the Quad create an environment that really promotes academic engagement.”

Another student, Tabatha Samsoe, also shared her opinion, “It’s one of my favorite places to study because of the calm environment.”

Armando Castro, RCC’s instructional media technician, said the Quad has a lot of rich history behind it.

“I think students should appreciate the Quad,” he said. “Students should know that they are literally walking in the footsteps of those that came before them.”