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Regents Approve Feasibility Of River Campus Expansion

Southeast Missouri State University's River Campus.
Southeast Missouri State University

The Southeast Missouri State University Board of Regents on Friday gave the university approval to come up with a final design for a new River Campus building.

The structure will include both residential and academic space. Preliminary plans call for a four story structure, but that could change. 

The bottom floor will feature space for music and dance, as well as a dining facility. The top three floors will hold apartment-style living spaces with 160 beds.

Southeast Vice President for Finance and Administration Kathy Mangels says the new building will provide additional capacity in the housing system.

“We have students who spend a lot of time at the River Campus, whether it’s practice or performing,” Mangles said. “They have asked to a space that is close to that building because they will practice late into the night. They would like to be close to their building.”

Southeast currently houses 3,000 students on campus, but the university deferred enrollment in recent years due to a lack of space. The university also books a floor at the Candlewood Suites for students. Another new residence hall is currently under construction at the main campus.

Mangles says planners will take existing structures into consideration while designing the new building.

“One of the important things, considering the historic nature of the seminary property, is we want to mimic those building materials and style of building. We’re really looking to create a 'quad' kind of feel on that campus,” Mangles said.

Preliminary  estimates indicate the construction will cost between $20 and $23 million. The university wants to complete the project in time for student to move into the residence hall by the fall 2014 semester.

The Board of Regents will vote on the plans at December’s meeting.