The long-awaited completion of the Nursing and Health Sciences Building at Texas A&M University-Commerce is steadily approaching, according to an administrator at the institution.
Alicia Currin, vice president for Business and Administration at A&M-Commerce, said in an interview with the Commerce Journal on Wednesday that the nursing building is 97-percent complete as of the end of last week. She also added that the date for substantial completion was set for July 29, less than a month before the start of the fall semester.
When asked whether or not classes would be held in the building in the fall, she said that the decision has yet to be made.
“There hasn’t been a decision made about classes for the fall, and that decision would be made by the Provost,” Currin said. “We are playing it by ear essentially.”
Currin did say that if it comes to a point where the building would not be ready by the start of the fall, a phase-in system could be done to move in during the semester.
The construction of the building, which began in March of 2017, has been fraught with significant delays. Originally slated to be completed in December of 2018 and open for the Spring 2019 semester, the construction did not progress as planned, thanks in no small part to the significant wet season experienced in the summer and fall of last year.
Currin said that the furniture is being delivered now and work will begin soon on the audio/visual hookups and components of the building.
In addition, Currin added that the new tennis courts and sand volleyball courts at the Cain Sports Complex are complete.
The administrator said that large future projects such as a planned agricultural expo center and expansions to the Morris recreation Center were effectively put on hold, with the Texas Legislature not allocating funds to Tuition Revenue Bonds for the ag expo. Currin stated the rec center expansion has been pushed back a few years to allow for a larger expansion.
Also on the table for future projects is a new residence hall and finding a new home for the University Police Department.
Mark Giossi, who works in Facilities Reporting and Energy Management at the university, said that a major energy-saving project has been completed across the entire campus. Many buildings received new lights, updated control systems and more to save on energy costs.
“We are doing something everywhere on campus,” Giossi said.