OSU students to see $100M in campus improvements

MARK ROUNTREEStillwater NewsPress

STILLWATER (AP) — Approximately $100 million of completed or in-progress facility and infrastructure improvements await students when they return to campus for the fall semester at Oklahoma State University.

Mike Buchert, director of long range facilities planning at OSU, said early-stage work is beginning on University Commons, a 950-bed residence hall that will be constructed where the outdoor track is located on Hall of Fame Avenue. The $65 million project includes three buildings and is slated for completion in the summer of 2015, the Stillwater NewsPress reported (http://bit.ly/15yy6y1 ).

Construction is coming to an end on a $10 million tennis center at the corner of Washington and McElroy. The tennis center features six indoor courts that will be completed in September and 12 outdoor courts that will be finished in the spring of 2014.

Work is expected to be completed before school begins Aug. 19 on an $8 million outdoor track facility on McElroy.

Construction soon will begin on a library auxiliary building east of the intersection of Hall of Fame and Western. The $7.5 million building will house approximately 1.5 million volumes of books from the Edmon Low Library. Construction is expected to be completed by December 2014.

Final renovations will be completed soon at the Postal Plaza Art Gallery in downtown Stillwater. A grand opening is scheduled in October for the $4 million project.

Renovation of Farm Road is under way. The $2 million project will replace a crumbling road and aging utilities.

A sidewalk widening project in front of Edmon Low Library will be completed before the semester begins. The $1 million Legacy Walk project will widen the walkway to 22 feet to the east and west of the library.

The ongoing construction comes on the heels of several recently completed projects on campus, including work on Monroe Street, renovation of the Student Union, construction of an indoor practice facility, improvements to Boone Pickens Stadium, upgrades to the Henry Bellmon Research Center, remodeling of the fifth floor of the Edmon Low Library and improvements to the Colvin Center Annex.

Buchert said in the last five years, construction and renovation projects on campus have amounted to approximately $1 billion.