Pardon our dust. Central Park Campus is improving.
Two major construction projects on the campus are on schedule to open this coming school year.
First up is a 23,500-square-foot conference center on the north side of the campus. The center, which is modeled after a similar facility on the Preston Ridge Campus, is scheduled to open when school starts in Fall 2015. In addition to theater-style seating for 1,000 people, the conference center will boast two classrooms, an addition to the PRC design.
The conference center is about 50 percent complete, with brick and sheetrock starting to go up a couple of weeks ago, according to Ed Leathers, Collin College’s director of safety, security, facilities and construction. Interior construction, including the installation of large air handlers, is ongoing. Exterior glass should also be put in over the next few weeks.
The conference center will be followed by a 125,000-square-foot health sciences building in Spring 2016. Collin College’s first building dedicated solely to the health sciences, the Cary A. Israel Health Sciences Center will feature state-of-the-art lab facilities for students in emergency services, nursing, polysomnographic technology (sleep tech), respiratory care and surgical technology.
The building also will house classrooms, faculty offices and an expanded simulation lab, where students will use advanced human patient simulators to practice clinical procedures.
The center’s steel infrastructure is about halfway complete, with interior framing coming quickly behind. Because of the size of the building, Leathers said the contractor is working on some interior aspects of the building as the rest of the steel is going up.
“They are following right behind with the studs for the drywall and the exterior sheathing,” he said. “By the time they get to the end of the steelwork, they will already have the rooms framed up at the end they started on.”
Dr. Sherry Schumann, VP/Provost of the Central Park Campus, said the CPC community is excited to see the construction projects moving along so well, especially since occupying the new health sciences building will mean more space for other programs at the campus.
“It is important to remember that the campus development is not just limited to the two new buildings under construction,” she said. “After the new facilities are completed and the programs move to their new locations, backfill construction will increase opportunities for students in fine arts, sciences, fitness and wellness and create other collaborative spaces for student interaction in the main building.”
Leathers said most of the interior roadways around the construction sites are poured and the remaining concrete work will follow shortly.
“So far the projects are exactly on schedule,” he said.