Background Image Alternative Text: Construction on the MSU campus

MSU campus construction projects underway to enhance academics, research, student experience

At the corner of Blackjack Road and Stone Boulevard, construction crews are building a new facility for Mississippi State’s Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences, left, and Department of Poultry Science, right. The corner building will connect both departments. The project is one of many capital improvement projects underway on the MSU campus. (Photo by Beth Wynn)

Contact: James Carskadon

STARKVILLE, Miss.—As Mississippi State prepares for the fall 2019 semester, several capital improvement projects are underway to help the university meet growing demand for academic, research and student living spaces.

“We are excited about these projects that will benefit our growing campus community in a way that maximizes efficiency and impact,” MSU President Mark E. Keenum said. “Our campus planning team does a tremendous job of ensuring that every project meets the current and future needs of the university. We greatly appreciate the investments that the Mississippi Legislature and others have made in improving our facilities, which will help our students, faculty and staff continue to make a substantial impact every day in Mississippi and around the world.”

Hundreds of MSU students will move into the new College View student housing development in August. The $67 million facility is a public-private partnership with Greystar Real Estate Partners. It includes 656 residential beds, 46,000 square feet of retail space, recreational amenities, an outdoor entertainment zone and a 7,000-square-foot addition to the MSU Child Development and Family Studies Center.

Two connected projects are nearing completion at the corner of Blackjack Road and Stone Boulevard. Contractor Century Construction is wrapping up work on a 44,300-square-foot facility that will house classrooms, research labs and administrative space for MSU’s Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences. Connected to this is a 31,300-square-foot building for the Department of Poultry Science, which is currently being built by Amason and Associates. Work is expected to be complete on the Poultry Science building by the end of the year. Both structures were designed by Tupelo-based McCarty Architects.

At the intersection of Hardy Road and Morrill Road, work continues on the Richard A. Rula Engineering and Science Complex. The 70,000-square-foot facility, expected to open in fall 2020, will house the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and provide classrooms and offices; teaching, research and chemistry labs; and high bay areas. Jackson-based Eley Guild Hardy Architects is the design professional, while Columbus-based West Brothers Construction is the general contractor.

On the north side of campus, the MSU-Starkville Oktibbeha School District Partnership School will open in 2020. The school will serve every sixth-and seventh-grade student in the local school district and also will be a demonstration site for student teachers and faculty members in MSU’s College of Education. It will provide educational lessons for SOCSD and MSU students as the two entities work jointly to identify collaborative efforts on curriculum, instruction, assessment and evaluation. The 128,000-square-foot building was designed by JH&H Architects and is being built by West Brothers Construction.

Construction started this month on a 500-space parking garage next to Howell Hall, near Humphrey Coliseum and Davis Wade Stadium. The $16 million garage is expected to be complete in the summer of 2020. It was designed by McCarty Architects and is being built by Amason and Associates. Additionally, a new surface parking lot between Critz Hall and the new Baptist Student Union is under construction, with the expected opening in September. The lot will add 225 parking spaces available to anyone with a commuter permit.

Ground is being broken this week on the $8 million Mississippi State Tennis Pavilion, an indoor facility for the men’s and women’s tennis teams. The 48,815-square-foot facility, which includes six indoor courts and elevated spectator seating, is expected to be complete in the spring of 2020. The building, located adjacent to the A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre and Nusz Park, was designed by Jackson-based Eley Barkley Dale Architects and is being built by Florence-based Hemphill Construction.

Tim Muzzi, university architect and director of the Office of Planning, Design and Construction, said MSU aims to exceed state energy efficiency standards by 30 percent for all new buildings on campus, which results in significant energy savings. He also noted that years of deliberate campus planning are paying off aesthetically and functionally.

“The buildings are starting to speak the same architectural language, which unifies the campus,” Muzzi said. “We’ve adopted certain standards and we have a lot of checks and balances in place now. It’s producing quality buildings, and buildings that make a lot of sense environmentally and design wise.”

Other planned projects include:

—A new $17 million facility for the MSU Department of Music is in the final design phase, with construction expected to begin this fall.

—Pre-planning is underway for a $30 million building, to be built southeast of the Joe Frank Sanderson Center, for the Department of Kinesiology.

—Initial design work is underway for a new College of Architecture, Art and Design facility.

—Plans were announced last fall for a major renovation to Humphrey Coliseum.

—A 400-space parking lot expansion is planned adjacent to Fresh Foods Company, which will include an extension of Morgan Avenue, providing a connection from Stone Boulevard to Magruder Street.

—Design work also is underway for a new road, Bulldog Way, that will start at Blackjack Road and connect to the intersection of Bailey Howell Drive and Lee Boulevard.

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