As students at ETSU complete the final week of the semester, many wonder when the construction on the campus’ main building will be completed.
The $45.5 million project has been in the works since August 2014, while the majority of the building has been shut down for more than a year.
“I’m glad to say that everything is on schedule and on budget,” said Assistant Vice President for University Center and ID System Dr. Sam Mayhew. “The Culp will be reopening in January 2020.”
Students can expect numerous changes to the building’s layout, but the entrances will remain the same.
“The bookstore is being moved to the first floor and will be beside the post office,” said Mayhew. “All restaurants will be on the main floor as well.”
As for the original food options, Starbucks and Chick-fil-A are the only restaurants that will remain.
“There will also be a full-service Steak ‘n Shake, Boar’s Head Deli and convenience store and an Asian option called Mine Bowl,” said Mayhew.
Additional changes being made to the first floor include a new performance stage and extensive gaming equipment in the Cave, so students can continue to play videos games and hang out in the area.
“The second floor will be the student hub,” said Mayhew. “The new media center, Multicultural Center, Student Organization Resource Center and Center for Advisement and Student Excellence will be located there.”
The media center was created with the idea to provide a new and up-to-date area for the East Tennessean; The Edge, the student-run campus radio station; and other multimedia productions.
While the closing of the first and second floors of the Culp has been an inconvenience for many at ETSU, the new additions and renovations will provide more space and opportunities for students, faculty and staff to work and enjoy time on campus.
“The only area that will remain closed are the ballrooms on the third floor, which will continue to be updated,” said Mayhew. “The rest of the building will be ready in time for the next spring semester.”