There is a buzz around campus this summer, well, a lot of noises really. The sounds of jackhammers and diesel engine tractors are hard to miss while walking around Auraria, as the new Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center and Student Success Center are in full construction mode.
Both of the projects are currently on schedule, with the HHLC set to open Aug. 1, 2012, and the SSC set to open in April 2012.
“The construction is going very well,” said Chad Gruhl, Director of Hotel-Lodging Management in the Department of Hospitality, Tourism and Events. “We have not experienced any challenges to date. We are right on schedule.”
The HLC is a $45 million project, and $12 million of that was sold in bonds which must be paid back through fundraising efforts. Gruhl also said that vendors have been providing deep discounts on certain items.
The SSC project was paid for through loans totaling $62 million. The SSC cost will account for $52 million, and the other $10 million was allocated to the Backfill project, a program dedicated to upgrading, reusing and renovating spaces in three buildings around campus. The money is being paid back on a loan schedule based on enrollment numbers from a few years ago.
“We are tracking very well,” said Sean Nesbitt, Vice President Office of Administration and Finance. “We had a very fortunate winter. I think we maybe lost five days total due to the snow.”
The HLC, which is being built just west of Speer boulevard and Auraria parkway, will be a fully functioning hotel, and will provide hands on learning to students in the Hospitality, Tourism and Events Department.
The SSC will be located on the corner of 9th street and Auaria parkway, nuzzled next to the Tivoli Center. The 145,000 square-foot building will house the Registrar’s office, Financial Aid, Student Academic Success, New Student Orientation, and other offices.