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Purdue building projects moving forward

Purdue is making the physical adjustments to accommodate an expansion of the College of Engineering. A committee of the board of trustees approved plans to renovate and reconfigure space in several buildings.

The projects totaling $70 million are still being finalized, but could include Hampton and Grissom halls, the Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering buildings.

Trustee Gary Lehman says the expansion of that college is a high priority for the university.

“As we bring new faculty members in and we have changes in our student learning models, we have to make sure we have facilities to complement those.”

The renovations will allow Engineering to expand by nearly 700 students and more than 200 faculty and staff members.

The committee also advanced the idea of the Active Learning Center. The $79 million project will be funded with $50 million from the state, $13 million from the university’s capital reserve for buildings and the remainder from private gifts.

The building will provide new space for Libraries and collaborative work space for classes.

Vice President for Physical Facilities Mike Cline says it will be a one-of-a-kind campus building.

“Space during the day as classroom and library space, and then the space will be flexible to be used for more study space and library space, as opposed to just classroom. It’s a very innovative approach.”

The Active Learning Center will replace the existing Engineering Administration Building and what was the North Power Plant. Those will be demolished next year with construction beginning soon after the site is cleared.

The full board of trustees must give final approval to both projects.

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