Construction Projects Move Ahead At JMU
Board Seeks $622K For Duke Hall Operations
Posted: January 22, 2013
HARRISONBURG — James Madison University’s board of visitors is hoping that unlike the governor, the General Assembly will heed a request to fund operations for the campus’ Duke Hall in 2013-14.
Otherwise, Charles King, senior vice president of administration and finance, said the $622,000 it needs must come from within JMU’s pockets.
On a unanimous vote, the board agreed Friday to submit a budget amendment to the General Assembly that calls for nearly $299,000 in general funds from the state and $323,000 in nongeneral funds to operate the newly renovated building.
Last year, the university asked Gov. Bob McDonnell to include the funds in his biennial budget amendments, but they were not part of the $31 million worth of amendments the governor proposed for higher education in 2013-14.
“We were a little surprised that that wasn’t funded,” King said. “If we’re not successful in the General Assembly, we’re going to decide how we’re going to fund that out of our operating dollars.”
The $42.9 million renovation of Duke Hall, located near the JMU Quad on the corner of South Main and Grace streets, is slated for completion in November and will add about 53,000 square feet to the 67,000-square-foot facility. Duke houses an art gallery, theater and offices for the School of Art and Art History.
The board also voted to move forward with three capital projects, two of which had been submitted to the governor and also were not picked up in the budget amendments.
The university will begin a $1.1 million planning process for renovations to Madison Hall, the former Rockingham Memorial Hospital Cancer Center, and to pay for a new $4.25 million field hockey stadium.
“[McDonnell] chose not to approve any sports-related projects,” King said. “I don’t think there will be any problem at all getting [approval] … because we’re using our own funds.”
Once the planning is completed for Madison Hall, the university is hoping the state will provide the money to pay for the rest of the project, King said.
The board also voted to move forward with selling $50 million in bonds to finance the construction of a new apartment-style housing complex on what used to be the Grace Street Apartments and Walnut Lane Flats properties.
Construction is expected to start next spring with a planned completion date of May 2014.
Contact Emily Sharrer at 574-6286 or firstname.lastname@example.org