The long arm of the law in the Fenway-Kenmore neighborhood just got a little bit bigger.
Boston University received final approval from the city last week for a $172 million expansion and addition to the Boston University School of Law complex at 765 Commonwealth Ave.
The goal of the construction is to create learning and study space and update outdated facilities, including making room for formal and informal student social space, a dining area, group study facilities, and the expansion of the school's professional education programs.
The university's plans call for the rehabilitation of the existing law school exterior and renovation of 150,000 square feet inside the building, and an additional 95,000 square foot, 96-foot addition on the west side of the law school above the existing one-story building.
The existing 18-story building was designed by Jose Luis Sert and built in 1964.
Project construction is slated to begin in winter 2012-2013, with final completion expected for fall 2015, according to the Boston Redevelopment Authority.