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UAFS Getting Multi-Million-Dollar Facelift | News

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UAFS Getting Multi-Million-Dollar Facelift
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After a year of planning, the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith announced the school is getting a multi-million-dollar face lift.

University officials released a top dollar construction plan with a $15.5 million visual arts building on the top of their list.

The 58,000-square-foot facility is expected to be built on the corner of Waldron Road and Kinkead Avenue.

“If you look at all the buildings that we are going to do in restructuring the campus, you are talking hundreds of millions of dollars,” said Chancellor Paul Beran.

Almost 7,200 hundreds students attend UAFS. As the student population continues to grow, Beran said property has been purchased to support the plan.

“We have been purchasing houses as they become available that are contiguous to the university,” he said.

Designers behind the plan said the new visual arts building will house everything from graphic design labs to a movie theater seating 150 people.

Master planner Neal Kessler said a total of 12 new buildings could be built on campus.

“A new fitness facility, which we are calling student recreation and wellness facility, and that really is going to help both recruitment and retention of students,” said Kessler.

One UAFS recruit said the plan excites her and the construction is needed.

“The fitness center’s not really that great,” said Nedenya Cine. “We need a better one just so everyone can have more room.”

UAFS officials hopes to break ground for the building by January of next year.

Beran said the construction funds came from grants and donors. He hopes the master plan will be finished in September of 2028, just in time for the school’s centennial anniversary.

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