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City university's cost expected to rise

November 15, 2000

City university's cost expected to rise



By DAN KULIN / Staff Writer


The University System of Maryland Hagerstown Education Center probably will cost more than the estimated $12.5 million but no one knows how much more, University System Capital Planning Director Mark Beck said Wednesday.

The expected increase is being blamed on a tight construction market, which has made construction more expensive.

"All our fiscal year 2002 requests are affected," Beck said.

Of the soon-to-be-revised $12.5 million estimate, Beck said about $10.5 million is budgeted for construction at the Hagerstown center.

"The construction amount, $10.5 million, that's the number we think will increase," Beck said.

He said new cost estimates for the Hagerstown center should be completed within "a few weeks," and he didn't know what the new figure might be.

The costs for other construction projects have generally increased by 5 percent to 25 percent, Beck said.

He said the University System Board of Regents has asked that funding for the project be included in the governor's budget.

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Raquel Guillory, a spokeswoman for the Governor, said it was too early to say what will be included in the budget. She said Gov. Parris Glendening was in Utah Wednesday attending a National Governors' Association meeting.

State Sen. Donald F. Munson, R-Washington, said the Hagerstown Education Center project has been a favorite of the Governor's.

"But the fact is there is not enough money. Some of these projects are going to have to be delayed or cut and who knows how that will fall out," Munson said.

The Hagerstown Education Center is planned for the city-owned Baldwin House complex in the first block of West Washington Street. The vacant buildings, a former hotel, department store and warehouse, would be renovated.

Beck said plans call for beginning construction of the new center in July 2001, and the facility being open for classes in fall 2003.

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