STEPHENVILLE (February 4, 2016) – Tarleton State University’s population keeps expanding as each semester progresses and, to match the growing number of students, Tarleton continues to increase its campus as well.
Officials at Tarleton have recently announced continued construction including building new residential halls on the corner of Vanderbilt and Lillian Street, by Tarleton’s Memorial Stadium. This hall joins other new residential halls.
Each residential hall is being uniquely built for specific groups of students. Traditions North will house allied health students and the new student health center, Traditions South will be the ROTC and Corps of Cadets and the Honors Hall will house honors students. All three residential halls are currently on schedule and expected to open in the fall.
“Obviously, if we have a spring like we had last year with all of that chaotic weather and hail, construction schedules are construction schedules,” Tarleton Vice President for Advancement and External Relations Dr. Kyle McGregor said. “They have to ebb and flow based on the weather.”
Additionally, Tarleton plans on completing a utility and infrastructure project for Lillian and Vanderbilt by 2017.
“What we are doing is going underneath those streets and refreshing all of those utilities. Then, when we come back on top, we are going to put pedestrian malls just like we have on Jones Street in front of Centennial and Legends and Legacy,” McGregor said.
McGregor also addressed the current state of the stadium project.
“We have a POR – project of requirements – that is being released, and we’ve had individuals bid on that to see who the architect is going to be,” McGregor said. “Essentially, it’s going to be a two-year process. People around town have been asking if it will interfere with football season, and, no, it won’t. We’ve scheduled around that.”
Once the stadium has been renovated, there will be entirely new seating on the west side and a new press box, on what will become the home side. The turf will also be replaced.
Tarleton will also release the RFP for a new Applied Sciences building next month, which will primarily offer space for engineering and agricultural labs.
“That one is slated to go between Ferguson (dorm) and Dairy Queen, where we have that large parking lot right there,” McGregor said. “So, we are going through the process of gathering more parking to replace that parking.”
However, there is no parking garage in Tarleton’s near future due to costs. And while Tarleton is ‘in the process of gathering more parking,’ there are no current projects or firm plans for more parking projects.
“It’s an expensive proposition,” McGregor said. “We were restricted to charging individuals who would be using the garage upwards of $600 per year. It’s not financially feasible and not very responsible. At some point in time we may have parking garages, but at the current time it’s not worth the cost.[More space for parking] is being studied until 2018. No parking will go away until then.”
Tarleton is looking to expand to the northeast and southwest of the Stephenville campus, which is where they will add additional parking spaces if possible. Tarleton currently offers shuttles from many of the off-campus apartment complexes, as well as from the parking lots located behind the baseball and softball fields which are avaiable for students. These lots were completed as part of a construction project in 2014.