Tuesday, November 21, 2017
News Roundup

St. Petersburg College Seminole campus embarks on $4 million project

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SEMINOLE — St. Petersburg College has embarked on a multimillion dollar expansion of two buildings on the Seminole campus.

Construction is expected to start soon on the $4.1 million project, which will see improvements to the library and the Technology Learning Center, the original building on the Seminole campus. Construction is expected to be complete next summer in time for the fall semester, said James Olliver, provost of the Seminole campus.

Work on the library will center on the second floor, which has been a shell since its construction in 2003. When finished, the new space will have a 75-student, tiered, multipurpose classroom; an office suite for the dean of science; five offices for the Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions; shared space for the Center for Excellence for Teaching and Learning and adjunct faculty; a faculty development room; office space for an instructional technologist; and 14 faculty offices.

The college will expand the Technology Learning Center by 1,800 square feet by enclosing the patio on the northeast corner of the building.

The student commons area inside the building will be renovated to include a reference area, a writing studio and a math studio. Seven faculty offices will be added as will a combination chemistry and microbiology lab.

"It's not a brand-new building, but it gives us so many additional capabilities that we've needed," Olliver said.

Construction is expected to cost about $3.2 million, or about $209.89 per square foot. Related costs are expected to bring the project total to about $4.1 million.

The city of Seminole, which is SPC's partner in the library, will pay up to $128,000 of that, said Harry Kyne, director of administration. The expenditure is for the portion of the improvements that the city wanted, which includes a new reading room and more space for books.

Kyne said the city plans to ask the Pinellas County Library Cooperative for a grant to help pay for Seminole's share.

This is the second major project on the campus in recent years.

In 2010, the college constructed a natural habitat park as a kind of outdoor classroom for its environmental science technology and parks and leisure services programs as the first phase of a larger project.

It was built on about 40 acres of a 100-acre parcel of wetlands the college got in 1969. The construction system was designed to protect the ecosystem.

The park includes a boardwalk, a butterfly and sculpture garden, and a 50-seat teaching pavilion. Future projects include extended trails, an environmental classroom building and a possible spur to the Pinellas Trail.

Anne Lindberg can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 893-8450.

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