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Projects continue on UM campus

By Christina Steube

University of Mississippi

The student population continues to grow at the University of Mississippi. As a result, the Oxford campus is growing and improving to accommodate the influx of students.

Over the next few years, major construction projects will enhance campus life like these current projects.

Manning Center football practice fields

The Manning Center football practice fields are being enlarged to add length to the short field affected by the construction of the parking garage. About 40 yards will be added to the west end of the north field adjacent to Hill Drive, giving the program two full fields for practice. This field will be converted to synthetic turf, and the renovation will also include irrigation, floodlights, observation towers, fence and post padding and audio equipment. This project will be completed by July.

Vaught-Hemingway Stadium turf

The turf in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium will be changed as well. The artificial turf was deteriorating, so it has been removed and will be replaced with natural grass. A new irrigation system will be installed to help with upkeep of the natural grass. This project will also be completed in July.

Vaught-Hemingway Stadium

Vaught-Hemingway Stadium is getting an upgrade that will completely change its look. The north end zone bleachers are being replaced with a seating bowl, creating a more complete game environment. A brick facade will be added to the exterior of the end zone, creating a more uniform look that matches other campus structures as well as serving as the new gateway to the stadium. The entry will be the new end point for the Walk of Champions. A new plaza will replace the existing parking lot and islands, and will include a “Wall of Champions.” The stadium projects will be completed by September.

Honors College renovation and addition

This two-phase project began in March 2014 with a 15,400-square-foot addition of classrooms, study nooks and administrative offices. This phase doubled the building’s size and was finished in early 2016. The second phase is underway and includes renovations to the existing facility. This phase is to be completed this fall.

Residence Halls 2 and 3

(Student Housing Phase II)

The rapid enrollment growth has created a need for more on-campus housing. Two new five-story residence halls will house 624 students at the former site of Guess Hall on Rebel Drive. Buildings are slated to open in August.

Student Union

addition and renovation

The Ole Miss Student Union is undergoing a complete renovation. Construction on the first phase began in summer 2015, including the addition of dining areas, a ballroom, support kitchens, a loading dock and a transit center, all scheduled to be completed next summer. The new dining services area will open in the fall of 2017. In January 2017, services in the existing Union will be temporarily relocated to allow renovation of the student government offices, bookstore, lounge, office spaces and box office. The $50 million project will add 60,000 square feet and should be complete by the end of 2018.

Croft Institute building envelope

The renovation to the exterior walls of the Croft Institute is ongoing and has been extended due to the deteriorated state of the masonry on the 1853 building. The brick facade on the east side will be fully replaced. The project is expected to be complete later this year.

John W. White Facilities Management building west wing addition

As demands for new buildings increase, so does the need for additional staff. The Department of Facilities Planning is constructing a new addition to the existing Facilities Management Administration Building on Hathorn Road that will include office and departmental spaces for Facilities Planning and the Office of Sustainability. This is expected to be complete by January 2017.

Track facility restoration

The track facility is getting a brand-new surface after storm drainage issues were corrected. The project involves filling, compacting and stabilizing all sub-soils at the facility. After that, the rubber track will be completely replaced. The project is expected to complete in July.

Jackson Avenue Center

Phase II renovations

The project involves renovating 41,500 square feet in the Jackson Avenue Center, space that was not renovated in 2012. The project will provide a new space for the University Testing Center, three multipurpose rooms, offices and support spaces. New HVAC and electrical systems will be installed and new restrooms will be added. Construction began in April and should be complete in July 2017.

North parking garage

A new parking structure will be constructed in the north area of campus behind Kinard Hall. The seven-level parking garage will provide 1,300 additional parking spaces. Work will begin this summer, and the garage is expected to be open in August 2017.

Gillom Women’s Sports Center

The center will undergo interior renovation, which includes new offices, a new volleyball competition area, concessions, a new strength and conditioning facility, a sports medicine suite, ADA upgrades, an elevator, film rooms, spectator restrooms and visitor locker rooms. Work begins this summer and will be completed in the summer of 2017.