EUGENE, Ore. (KMTR) – The pit that people called an eye-sore for years is no longer a pit.
Lane Community College’s downtown campus site has been under construction for months now and crews say so far, all is well. At least one of the buildings is expected to open September of next year as planned.
Officials say there have been a few bumps in the road, but nothing they didn’t expect. In fact, they timed the project around having some obstacles. As of Thursday, about 80 wells were being drilled and installed that would transfer rain water to generate heating and cooling. The 22,000 gallon rain water storage tank was being delivered Friday.
According to Joan Aschim from Lane Community College, the only change they made to the original design was an additional in the housing building. They found it would save them money to add a fifth floor rather than build the structure with just four as planned.
Many people wondered why the pit was even filled in the first place and why L.C.C didn’t opt to use the space for a basement. Contractor Andrew Dykeman said that was not structurally feasible, and would have ended up costing more. So far, the project is in line with the budget.
Lane Community College continues to look for grants to fund for the project. The latest news financially was that the city granted the project about $8 million dollars. The land the buildings are going on was donated by the Urban Renewal Agency, otherwise valued at $1.6 million dollars. The city of Eugene is also allowing the college to access more than $7 million dollar bond to help with the housing portion.
Dykeman said the key in this project is really having a good team of people to work with. Lease Crutcher Lewis has done a few successful construction projects on the main L.C.C campus. The school also has a team of people solely dedicated to the downtown site plans.
Dozens of people have been working on the site daily, a number that Dykeman expects will increase as the project progresses. They still need to add more gravel and dirt.
Surprisingly, the rain has not held up the crews much. Yet, they are relieved to see some dry weather at last.
The new campus will include a $35 million dollar education building and a $20 million dollar student housing facility. Between the two buildings, L.C.C will have more than 160,000 square feet of new facilities.
The housing plan will offer units to about 256 students. The buildings are LEED certified. The first classes will be offered in January 2013.Webcams
continue to monitor the progress of the construction at 10th and Olive downtown. Still photos are updated every hour on the hour between 8am and 6pm. You can also keep tabs on the construction by visiting the Facebook page.