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No summer hiatus for important improvements on campus


BLACKSBURG, Va., June 14, 2006 – New construction, the completion of projects currently underway, and a variety of classroom renovations and other improvements on the Virginia Tech campus this summer will result in an enhanced teaching and learning environment for the university community. Major projects underway through the start of fall classes in August include:

Graduate Life Center renovation and expansion: Renovations to the Graduate Life Center, located in the former Donaldson Brown Hotel and Conference Center, are expected to be completed by fall. The remodeled facility will house the Graduate School on two levels of the original Alumni Hall. Visit the Graduate Life Center website for more information.

Lane Stadium west sideline expansion: After delays extending through the entire 2005 football schedule, major contracted construction on the West Sideline Expansion to Lane Stadium is now complete, and work is underway to restore the grounds outside the stadium and to complete other work using the resources of the university's Facilities team. Spring Road remains closed to through traffic pending completion of this work.

Life Sciences I Building: Construction of this new 72,000 square foot facility on Washington Street began in September 2005 and is scheduled for completion in summer 2007. The building will provide space for more than 200 faculty, students, and staff engaged in biological research, and will be managed by the university rather than by an individual college.

For more information about the project, click here.

Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science (ICTAS) Building: Groundbreaking for the new 98,000 square-foot ICTAS-1 building took place in May. The four story facility will house engineering-led research labs, offices, and work-spaces. Construction is expected to be completed in spring 2008. The ICTAS facility faces Stanger Street near the Old Turner Street.

Follow construction in real time via the ICTAS Webcam.

Peggy Lee Hahn Garden Pavilion: This new facility, scheduled to open this month, will serve as an event venue, visitor's center, seminar space, and office. A garden called the Meadow Garden will be located behind the pavilion. Phase I of this one plus acre area will include a path winding through herbaceous plants, grasses, and rock outcroppings, and Phase II of the garden will provide a "terrace garden" transition area between the pavilion and the Meadow Garden, and will feature a children's "tumble mound," a small amphitheater, and additional parking.

Visit the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences "Connections" magazine website for more information.

Multicultural Center renovation and expansion: As part of its continuing effort to build a more inclusive and welcoming campus climate, Virginia Tech is also renovating and expanding its Multicultural Center this summer, creating a more comfortable and functional environment that will enrich the quality of life for students who utilize the center. The $337,000 project will encompass 3,100 square feet and include the renovation of the existing Multicultural Center, located on the first floor (room 140) of the Squires Student Center, and the conversion of three adjacent meting rooms (rooms 150, 151, and 152) into office space to house the Office of Multicultural Programs and Services. The project is scheduled to be completed in time for the start of the 2006-07 academic year.

To learn more about this project, click here.

Summer 2006 Classroom Improvements Project: Sixteen of Virginia Tech's most heavily used classrooms are the target of a $7.27 million capital improvement project this summer that will greatly enhance the learning environment for students and teachers in Blacksburg. This ongoing work includes the installation of a variety of computer-based teaching/learning stations and associated renovations in eight classrooms to create computer-integrated laboratories, computer presentation classrooms, and distance learning class facilities.

Click here for details about the various improvements.

Commuter Lot Sewer Project: Work will continue throughout the summer on the Commuter Lot Sewer Project that has resulted in a number of parking and traffic changes. This project has currently progressed to the area of Stanger Street and Prices Fork Road.

For up-to-date information about the sewer project, and to see a map of the area affected, click here.

Parking changes affect students, faculty, and staff: Durham Lot, located off Stanger Street behind Durham Hall and previously assigned to Faculty/Staff parking, was permanently closed in May to provide a construction staging area for the new Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science (ICTAS) building. Replacements for faculty and staff spaces lost in the Durham Lot were established in Perry Lot 3, near the intersection of Stanger and Perry Streets, by converting 110 previously designated student (C/G) spaces to a comparable number of faculty/staff (F/S) spaces.

Some 335 additional C/G (student) parking spaces are being provided in the new Smithfield parking lot, which is currently under construction along Smithfield Road, adjacent to the existing Duck Pond Road. This additional parking space is expected to be open for use in August, in time for the start of fall semester.

For more information regarding parking changes, visit the Parking Services webpage.

Road closures: Several campus roads will be temporarily closed on various dates and for various lengths of time this summer to support ongoing construction activities. In addition to roads impacted by the Commuter Lot Sewer Project, noted above, other significant road closures include:

==> Spring Road; between the entrances to the Coliseum Lot and the Stadium Lot, is closed to thru traffic through approximately June 18 to support construction of the new West Stadium parking lot. Beginning June 19, Spring Rd will open to one-way traffic only--in-bound to campus (traffic will flow north from Southgate Dr. to Washington St.) until no later than July 7. The road is expected to return to normal beginning July 10.

==> Washington Street; between the entrances to the Litton-Reaves Lot and the Horticulture Lot, will be closed to thru traffic starting June 19 and continuing for approximately three weeks to support the installation of new underground utilities. This street should re-open to normal traffic no later than July 10.

More information and a map showing the various road closure sites can be found here.

Virginia Tech Facilities maintains a Facilities Customer Update online bulletin to keep the campus community and other interested parties informed of progress on these and numerous other projects that are already underway.