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Community Input Session: Redevelopment of East Campus

10/7 | New Projects, TowerPinkster

"During an afternoon community input session, WMU Vice President of Business and Finance Jan Van Der Kley said it would require external, private fundraising in order to preserve the two wings.

"The university only has capacity to keep the core building right now," said Bob Miller, associate vice president of community outreach for WMU, which last Thursday sold $15 million in bonds to fund East Hall renovations.

Work is expected to begin next spring to turn the 34,000-square-foot core of the university's birthplace into the Western Michigan University Alumni Center.

The university is razing three of the four buildings on historic East Campus this year, and whatever portion of East Hall's wings that are not included in the redesign are expected to be demolished later this year.

Miller said another public input meeting on plans for East Hall will be held in December, followed by a public meeting in the spring, where the final plans will be presented.

Jason Novotny, director of design for TowerPinkster, and company principal Bjorn Green presented three potential designs for the alumni center during the first of two public meetings Tuesday. One involves only the core portion of East Hall, another also preserves one of the wings, and the third preserves the core and both wings.

Novotny said keeping the core building would cost $15 million, while it would cost an additional $10 million or more to keep and renovate each of the wings. He added that more parking would also be required for the larger facility if the wings are retained." - MLive, Christina Cantero

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