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Campus construction continues

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Image courtesy of islanduniversity.smugmug.com/TAMU-CC Tidal Hall is estimated for completion in Dec. 2018.

Caleigh Sowder
Copy Editor

With a new semester comes new changes, this time in the form of construction. Construction on the new Life Sciences Research and Engineering building, Tidal Hall, is estimated to continue until December of this fall while Bay Hall is estimated to continue until November.

Tidal Hall is TAMU-CC’s latest expansion, breaking ground back in Sept. 2015. Clocking in at 111,000 square feet, this new building will provide engineering and science students with instructional and customized research labs. Terry Tatum, Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration, says that Tidal Hall was chosen because of the growth in our science departments.

“We’re growing in our science areas, and so as we prioritized what needs to be the next building on campus to help support our growth, it was decided that Tidal Hall would be the choice. That is a building that is going to be largely a science building with laboratory space in it as well as some faculty offices. It will support both teaching and research.”

Tatum says that funding for Tidal Hall was acquired from the Texas legislature, which was estimated to be at about $60 million.

“We had asked the legislature to give us funding for this building because of our intense space needs, and the legislature in fact — we’re very grateful — gave us TRB money, which is tuition revenue bonds.”

Originally estimated to be completed in the summer of 2018, the estimate is now December of this year. TAMU-CC President, Kelly Quintanilla, says the delay is because of a positive reason.

“We didn’t have enough money originally to do the third floor, so we just built the third floor and shelled it out. … We came in under budget and ahead of schedule and had enough money leftover that we could finish the third floor. So, we are a little delayed off the original plan, but we will have all three floors finished. It’s a very positive delay.”

Another campus building that is experiencing construction is Bay Hall. Quintanilla says that Bay Hall was due for a new roof but Hurricane Harvey caused it to happen sooner.

“What happened with the roofs for many of the buildings was that they weren’t necessarily completely destroyed by the hurricane, but say we had them on a schedule that at about 15 years we’re going to replace the roof, or 10 years, everything kind of got pushed sooner.

“It’s really thrown a crazy monkey wrench into how soon we are going to have to replace a lot roofs. We’ve got several that we want to get replaced now. Certainly, that one, Bay Hall — which we’re working on — the PAC, the older part of the University Center. … Those were all ones that the hurricane advanced the wear and tear on.”

The current estimate for Bay Hall’s completion is November, but even after Bay and Tidal Hall are completed, we know now that more construction is on the way. This can cause frustrations for students when it comes to navigating campus, but Tatum says that students’ convenience and safety are on the forefront of TAMU-CC’s minds.

“It’s always a challenge when you’re doing any sort of construction on a busy campus. We try to, for each project, take the minimal impact that we can to help students be able to get around more easily, and we try to make sure that there are routes. So, for Bay Hall, you can cut through the building. You can walk on the other side of the building. As we have other projects go up, there will be fencing around to direct students around the construction to keep everyone safe.”

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