Education complex building to begin

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    A ceremonial ground-breaking event for the new education building will take place at noon today, but actual construction won’t begin until June 1, said Chancellor Victor Boschini.Education students are taking their finals early so the Bailey Building can be cleared out by mid-May, said Sam Deitz, dean of the School of Education. Faculty and staff offices will be relocated to the basement of Tucker Technology Center starting May 3, he said.

    The building should be cleared by May 15, said Harold Leeman, associate director of major projects. The area will be a full construction site by June 1 and should be finished by July 2007, Leeman said.

    The original Bailey Building, which will be gutted and receiving a new stairwell, will be made over to look like it did when it was built in 1914, Leeman said.

    The combined square footage of both the Bailey Building and the new building will be about 35,000 square feet, Leeman said. The buildings will be connected by a glass walkway, he said.

    “We won’t take away from the old building,” Leeman said, “And the new building will stand alone. It will be pretty neat the way we’ve got it arranged.”

    The buildings will be operational within a few weeks of each other, Leeman said.

    The fundraising goal for construction was $10.2 million, but $11.5 million is the amount actually raised, said Shawn Kornegay, assistant director of communications.

    Steve and Betsy Palko donated $1.732 million, and the Mabee Foundation donated $1.5 million for construction, Kornegay said.

    The School of Education complex, comprised of the Bailey Building and the new building, will be called The J.E. & L.E. Mabee Foundation Education Complex, Kornegay said. The new building will be named the Steve and Betsy Palko Building after the top donors, he said. Plans for the Steve and Betsy Palko Building include classrooms, lecture halls, computer labs and offices, Leeman said.

    The new building will be rich in technology, Boschini said.

    “Finally, the physical building will match the quality of the education happening inside it,” Boschini said.

    The Steve and Betsy Palko Building and the renovated Bailey Building will have enough space to meet the demands of growth over the past five years, Deitz said. The classrooms are designed for the way education professors teach, he said. The classrooms will also be available for the rest of the university to use to reduce the classroom shortage on campus, he said.

    “This new facility will be an exciting and worthwhile addition to TCU,” Deitz said.