December 3, 2010
Metropolitan State University of Denver
Groundbreaking held for student building
Rowdy, the Metro State mascot, at the groundbreaking ceremony for the Student Success Building on Dec. 3.
The “winds of change” were visible the morning of Friday, Dec. 3 as Metropolitan State College of Denver held a groundbreaking ceremony for the Student Success Building—the first Metro State-owned building on the Auraria Campus, which houses three higher education institutions.
A host of city and business leaders joined more than 200 Metro State students, faculty, staff and the College’s Board of Trustees (BOT) at the ceremony to kick off the construction of the estimated $62 million, 100 percent student fee-funded building to be located on 8.5 acres between Seventh and Ninth sts., parallel to Auraria Pkwy.
“The Student Success Building will not only allow us to have our own unique identity, transforming the urban edge of the campus along the Auraria Parkway, but will also provide a physical demonstration of the commitment we have to retention and graduation of our students,” said President Stephen Jordan.
The sunny, but extremely breezy morning was symbolic of the changes happening at the 24,000-plus student College as it celebrates its 45th Anniversary, according to BOT Chair Robert Cohen. “The winds of change are blowing across this campus. It’s fitting to think about how far we’ve come in our very short history.”
President Stephen Jordan addresses crowd while Student Government Assembly (SGA) President Sammantha O’Brien and former SGA President Jack Wylie listen at Dec. 3 groundbreaking for Student Success Building.
When the four-story, 145,000 square-feet building opens in 2012, it will help increase the College’s dedicated classroom and administration space by 25 percent. It will house classrooms, support programs and administration offices with an adjacent central quad.
Several unique programs will be housed in the new building: First Year Success Program, Center for Innovation and a community action theater. The theater will connect academic resources with the needs of the community in a state-of-the-art meeting facility for public roundtables and special interest brainstorms.
Students Approve Fee
Metro State students at Dec. 3 groundbreaking ceremony for Student Success Building.
“Students understood the importance of making investments in themselves,” Jordan said of the student vote in April 2009 that approved a special fee to fund the building.
“This Student Success Building will not only deliver on what students need, but will also provide a strong sense of identity on campus,” said Student Government Assembly President Sammantha O’Brien. “The new building will better deliver services and build a sense of community.”
O’Brien added: “I see a home for Metro State in the future.”
First out of the gate in defining identity
President and Chief Executive Officer of the Downtown Denver Partnership Tamara Door said, “Metro State is the first out of the gate to define its reputation by its neighborhood.”
Metro State leaders at Dec. 3 groundbreaking ceremony for Student Success Building.
The Auraria Master Plan calls for each institution on campus to have its own “neighborhood.”
Also chair of the Auraria Board of Directors, she added “And you had to pop out with two,” referring to the College’s Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center slated to open also in 2012 on Auraria Parkway.
Cohen said, “Coming and leaving downtown, drivers will pass by “both buildings along Auraria Parkway and “understand our connection in the community.”
While embracing the road to a stronger individual identity for each institution on campus, Door also noted the important synergy of a tri-institutional campus. “The campus is an incredibly important symbol of economic development in Denver.”
The architect for the building is RNL and the general contractor is Saunders Construction with a projected completion in spring 2012. Updates on the building’s progress, architectural renderings as well as other Metro State construction projects can be found at www.mscd.edu/metrostaterising.