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Sylvania Campus continues to make progress with new construction and renovation prep
Photos and Story by Gina Whitehill-Baziuk
‘Tis the season – of holiday cheer and continued bond-funded campus renovation and construction at PCC Sylvania.
“We’re doing some new construction at Sylvania – a new storage facility for the automotive building and eventually, a new Child Development Center,” said Gary Sutton, Sylvania’s bond project manager. “Much of the campus work, though, is renovating the vintage, concrete buildings so that they’re energy-efficient, customer-friendly, and modern. And that takes some finesse and patience,” he said.
Construction on the automotive storage facility began this fall and should be complete by early January. The facility will be used as “swing space” for the duration of the bond work, until 2016 – either as classrooms or office space – before reverting to permanent storage space for the automotive program. The largest project will be modernizing nearly 75 percent of the College Center (CC) building, transforming it into an accessible, easy-to-navigate student union. Work on the building begins in late December, and between now and then, several temporary moves have or will take place to prepare for construction:
- The Orientation Center (formerly known as the Start Lab) moved from the Computer Resource Center in the lower CC mall area, to the Pine Room, off the cafeteria. It will reside here until June 2014, when it is relocated to its permanent home – back in the Computer Resource Center area.
- The Veterans Office will move to the front of the Teaching and Learning Center (TLC) by Dec. 27. It will stay here until June 2015, when it moves permanently to the area that currently houses the Women’s Resource Center.
“In some regards, what has been most challenging is the coordination of logistics – deciding what project to begin, and when, so that we create the least amount of disruption, for students and staff,” said Heather Lang, Sylvania’s Dean of Student Development. “It’s a bit like musical chairs, but the bond team – as well as our staff and students – have been extraordinarily patient and accommodating as together, we’ve figured things out and made decisions.”
Funding for construction stems from a $374 million bond measure approved by voters in 2008. The architectural design efforts at Sylvania are being led by GBD Architects. Approximately $55 million will be pumped into renovating 160,000 square feet of classroom, laboratory and office space.