Saturday, July 29, 2000

College planning $55M center

Growth stirred need at Cincinnati State

By Andrea Tortora
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        An 18 percent jump in enrollment over the last three years has left Cincinnati State Technical and Community College needing space.

        Officials said Friday the college will meet that need with a $55 million student and academic center and parking garage on Central Parkway in Clifton.

(Artist's rendering)
| ZOOM |
        The 472,000-square-foot building is the college's response to student and community needs, President Ron Wright said.

        “There are businesses in this area crying for workers with the technical skills,” Dr. Wright said. “They're counting on Cincinnati State to provide the work force that's necessary.”

        The project, expected to be finished in 2003, will also increase the college's prominence. The glass-and-steel building, which will be visible from Interstates 74 and 75, will act as a billboard for the school where enrollment is expected to top 7,000 this year.

        “We are tucked away on the hill and you can't see us until you look for us,” said Ross Wales, president of the college's board of trustees. “There's nothing the matter with telling the people where you are.”

        Preliminary plans were designed by Moody/Nolan Ltd. after meetings with 200 students, faculty and staff.

        The student life and academic center will include:

        • Classrooms and labs for the college's information technologies division and popular hospitality management programs.

        • A student center with bookstore, food court, computers, lounges, student organization offices, health services, fitness center and auditorium.

        The project is slated to cost $48 million for construction and $7 million for equipment.

        Funding will come from construction bonds, a campaign to raise private donations and allocations from the state. The college also has $6 million set aside it previously received from the state.

        The college will not increase tuition to pay for the building, officials said. In fact, tuition costs will drop 5 percent this year. The price of tuition had remained steady the past three years, spokesman Bruce Stoecklin said.

        Administrators foresee continued growth. By the time the building opens, the college expects an enrollment of 10,000.


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