ECU holds late-night celebration for bond passage
(Nov. 8, 2000)
University officials cheered the passage of the higher education facilities bonds with a late-night celebration at the site of the Science and Technology Building on Tuesday (Nov. 7).
Chancellor Richard Eakin led an applauding delegation of about 30 people in unveiling a new construction sign at the entrance to the site, off Founders Drive near the southwest corner of the General Classroom Building.
"What a wonderful evening this is for ECU," Eakin said. "The voters have overwhelmingly expressed their confidence in the universities and community colleges."
Sen. Ed. Warren and Rep. Edith Warren joined the ECU crowd at the construction site. North Carolina voters gave a ringing endorsement to the $3.1 billion bond referendum. It will provide $2.5 billion to the 16 University of North Carolina constituent institutions and UNC-TV and $600 million to the state's 59 public community colleges.
ECU will receive $190.6 million, of which $55 million will go to complete the Science and Technology Building. Pitt Community College's share will be $18 million. The Science and Technology Building will provide a new home to the Chemistry Department and the School of Industry and Technology, which are now housed in the Flanagan Building.
Outdated, deteriorating chemistry labs in Flanagan were among the poster children in the campaign for the bonds. The North Carolina General Assembly, before deciding to put the university bonds on the statewide ballot, had appropriated $6 million in two equal installments toward construction of the new facility.
The money was used for planning and development of the site. Bruce Flye, chief university architect, said bids on construction of the building could be taken in January or early February, with construction beginning by the end of the spring semester. The building is scheduled to open for classes in the fall semester of 2003.
The other major new ECU building to be financed by the bonds is a home for the Schools of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences and the Developmental Evaluation Clinic. The building will be on a site near the Brody School of Medicine.
University trustees are expected to approve a site for the project at their December meeting. The $46.9 million project is scheduled to begin in spring 2003 and open for students in the fall semester of 2005. It will take about six years to complete all ECU's construction and renovation projects financed by the bonds, Flye said.
The last projects scheduled for completion will be renovations of the Belk Building and the Rivers Building, both scheduled for completion in December 2006. One of the first projects to be completed will be the 35,000-square-foot addition to the west side of the Rivers Building.
Construction on the expansion will begin in the summer of 2001 and be completed for fall semester classes in 2002. Buildings slated for major renovations or classroom improvements include Flanagan, Rivers, Belk, Speight, Brewster, General Classroom, Rawl, Austin and the Old Cafeteria. In addition, the Health Sciences Library will be expanded.