The Facilities and Revitalization Committee of West Virginia University’s Board of Governors has added its endorsement of master plans and financing for athletics and a key campus transportation system.

The seven-member committee, meeting Wednesday (April 2) at the College of Law, also recommended names for several new buildings and a roadway honoring the author of the land-grant legislation which created institutions such as WVU.

The committee, chaired by BOG member Diane Lewis, also toured the nearly addition at the Law School. The $14 million project adds 22,000-square feet and will house new classrooms, a third courtroom, conference and interview rooms, distance education facilities, a multi-purpose event space, a faculty wing and space for the Center for Energy and Sustainable Development.

“It’s a pleasure to show the committee the near-end result of the first phase of the law school’s expansion and renovation project,” said Greg Elkins, associate dean for administration and finance, who led the tour. “It’s important for them to see our new facilities in person and learn about the positive impact they will have on the future of legal education. We’ve also been able to discuss the upcoming, two-year renovation of the existing building.”

The committee unanimously recommended the names for several construction projects.

If approved by the full board at Friday’s meeting, a road will which will lead from a new intersection on Patteson Drive to the new Evansdale Crossing building will be named Morrill Way in recognition of the Morrill Land-grant Acts, adopted in the late 19th Century which created the nation’s system of land-grant institutions.

The building names were:

  • Evansdale Crossing, a new multi-use public-private partnership building being constructed on the Evansdale campus will have classrooms, retail and student service space.
  • Health and Education Building, a two-building complex on Evansdale housing the College of Physical Activity and Sports Sciences as well as student health services and WVU Urgent Care.
  • Art Museum, also under construction on Evansdale.
  • College Park, a complex of 11 buildings providing apartment-style housing targeted to graduate and international students as well as students with families.
  • University Place, comprising University Place North Tower and University Place South Tower, the apartment-style public-private housing complex under construction in Sunnyside.

The athletics facilities master plan and the Personal Rapid Transit master plans were presented to the BOG’s Finance Committee on March 28 and resolutions approving the financing were reviewed.

The athletic facilities master plan – with some projects expected to begin later this year; others in the coming years – is estimated to cost $106 million, with $75 million in bonds made possible from guaranteed annual revenue from the Big 12 Conference, $6 million from a capital expenditure fund in the multimedia rights contract with IMG and $25 million in private donations through the Mountaineer Athletic Club.

Many of the current athletic facilities are 35-45 years old and in need of major makeovers. Initially, the football team room in the Milan Puskar Center will be updated and expanded, and renovations and expansions will be undertaken at 35-year-old Milan Puskar Stadium to include the concourses, restrooms, gates, concessions, LED boards and wall graphics. A marquee at the Coliseum intersection is also planned.

WVU’s nearly 40-year-old Personal Rapid Transit system, or electric-powered people mover that connects WVU’s three campuses and Downtown Morgantown business district, is also in need of major modernization as identified in the PRT Master Plan. A redesign and replacement of the Automatic Train Control System, replacement of substations and electrical gear, and tunnel repair at an estimated cost of around $53 million.

Modernization will be completed in three phases; phase one is nearing completion while phase two includes the redesign and replacement of the Automatic Train Control System, replacement of substations and electrical gear, and tunnel repair at an estimated cost of around $53 million.

The Facilities Committee added its endorsement to the Finance Committee’s. If approved by the full board on Friday, the plans will next move for further authorization from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission.



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