July 2, 2019
View a feed of MCLA campus construction work here.
Major upgrades will be waiting for MCLA students when they return this fall: Renovations to the Amsler Campus Center are under way and most are expected to be complete by August 2019.
The project begins with a renovation to the Centennial Dining Room, with dining area upgrades that include new furniture and a new seating configuration, as well as improved food delivery stations. The campus center pool (drained in spring 2019) will be replaced with a brand-new fitness center, which will include a two-lane hanging track around the perimeter of the room. New fitness equipment is also planned for the upgrade.
New space for the Athletics Department staff is planned for the third phase of this project, including new offices and conference spaces. Renovated locker rooms and the relocation of the College’s dance studio are also planned.
“I’m excited to see the completed renovations—and I’m excited to see our community’s reaction when they see them for the first time,” said MCLA’s Vice President of Student Affairs Cathy Holbrook. “We strive to create and maintain campus spaces that are attractive, versatile, and designed for our community—and we strive to do this in a way that is fiscally responsible. This project hits all those marks.”
Thanks to contributions from Aramark, the college’s food service provider, the Massachusetts State College Building Authority (MSCBA) and the Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance (DCAMM), no MCLA funds have been earmarked for this $4-5 million project.
“Through careful planning and contributions from Aramark and our state partners, we’ve been able to keep this project lean while still providing necessary updates,” said MCLA’s Vice President of Administration and Finance Lawrence Behan.
Among other planned improvements on campus, MCLA will soon renovate its Venable Theater, thanks to a gift from the Jane and Jack Fitzpatrick Trust. This $100,000 gift will provide for a full transformation, including improvements in seating, lighting, and access.
A ribbon-cutting on the updated Centennial Room dining space is planned for fall. For now, those who are interested in tracking the construction’s progress can view a feed at http://m.mcla.edu/gymcam/index.html.
A time-lapse of construction on the pool area, which will become MCLA's new fitness center, can be viewed at https://portal.mcla.edu/stopmotion/timelapse.mp4.
Any official event to present the Campus Center upgrades to MCLA’s community “will be less of a ‘grand opening’ and more of a ‘grand homecoming,” said Holbrook. “This space belongs to our students, faculty, and staff. I’m looking forward to seeing them use it.”