I don't know what plans you perused, but one of our emeriti was on the original planning committee and he hates hearing the parking-garage story. According to said emeritus, the story of why the funds ran out and a new design had be sought (before the foundations were laid) is because an administrator had neglected to make a bid for matching federal funds for the project. This is sadder than the urban legend...
So, I went back to my source material. And it seems that there are bits and pieces of potential urban legend indeed mixed in with my recollection. So, for the first time, I'm fact-checking one of my own posts.
- The building, currently a nasty squat-looking thing, was meant to be a big (and probably equally ugly) skyscraper, a veritable brutalist beacon: True. There are extant drawings for the mega-skyscraper original, and for the slightly scaled-back skyscraper building.
- The underground offices were originally supposed to be parking spaces: Uncertain, given the evidence at my disposal. There were indeed plans for 150 parking spaces in the originals. My source material doesn't note whether those spaces were the same as where the faculty offices are. But if you ever worked in one of these, you'd understand why anyone would come to that conclusion.
- The tower project was abandoned because the whole thing was sliding down the hill under its own weight. False. The cap-off was, as Pedantic Prof. has heard, a result of underfunding. The rumor that it was due to a slipping building is a natural result, I think, of the fact that the floors and ceilings are so wildly canted (see previous post), and are more so the further you go underground.
I think that covers it. And I maintain that the current building serves as an Ozymandias-like monument to hubris. One last question to Pedantic Prof., who appears to be on the ground: So, does your source say why everything is so twisted? Is there movement going on? And more importantly: have structural repairs been made?
Most importantly: Do you have a window?