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Cost of HCC renovations rises by about $3 million

November 22, 2000

Cost of HCC renovations rises by about $3 million



By TARA REILLY / Staff Writer


The projected cost of renovations to the Career Programs Building at Hagerstown Community College has risen by about $3 million, mainly because of increased construction costs, according to college President Norman P. Shea.

The new estimate, which increases the total cost from $4 million to $7.1 million, is included in the college's five-year Capital Improvement Program. The Board of Trustees approved the program at its Tuesday meeting.

A tight labor market is causing construction costs to rise across the state. The Washington County Board of Education faced a similar problem when the price of renovations at Williamsport Elementary School rose by $1.8 million, from $7.3 million to $9.1 million.

The Career Programs Building, which is the largest facility on the HCC campus, will undergo a complete renovation starting in 2003, Shea said. The building houses the school's computer center, Allied Health Center, finance office, Center for Continuing Education, the campus bookstore and cafeteria, among other offices. The project could be completed by 2006.

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The bookstore will be moved to the old library building and the finance office will be moved to the administration building.

"It's going to be gutted from top to bottom," he said. "It's going to be very costly to do."

Shea said he hopes $2.8 million will come from local money, and that the state will contribute $4.3 million. The money would be distributed from 2003 to 2006.

He said the college plans to discuss the costs with Washington County Commissioners.

The renovations will update the building, create new space and provide the option for new and expanded programs, according to college documents. It also will bring the building up to the appropriate handicap and code standards.

"It's a huge building and it needs major work," Shea said. "It'll take longer and more money to get it done."

Also included in the Capital Improvements Program approved Tuesday is a $2.3 million renovation to the 35-year-old Academic Building starting in 2006 and a $1.7 million renovation to the Administration Building starting in 2002.

Both projects will update the buildings to state codes. The Administration Building will gain storage space for records and office space.

Hagerstown Community College opened a $7 million Learning Resource Center in January and has spent more than $4 million in computer technology over the past five years.

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