Crews are clearing the northwest corner of Route 67 and University Drive in Macomb in preparation for what’s being called a “grand entrance monument” for Western Illinois University.
“The construction cost of the grand entryway monument is $420,000. It was competitively bid and the awarded contractor was Leander Construction from Canton, Illinois,” said Jerry Scott, WIU Construction Project Coordinator.
In addition, he said the architectural/engineering and survey expenses total $70,000.
Scott said the money will come from student fees.
The survey was done on a larger area including the former movie theater building site, the former Godfathers Pizza location, and the entire University Services Building parking lot. As a result, Scott said the survey can be used for the planning of future projects in that area.
The grand entrance monument will be 22 feet tall. It will include a “W” like what’s found on the brick gateways to Sherman Hall. The lighting will echo what’s found near Sherman Hall, and the brick blend will be the same as what’s found on many buildings on campus.
“Each of the architectural features that are found on the grand entryway monument can be found somewhere else on campus,” said Scott.
Western originally hoped to have the monument completed by the beginning of the 2013-14 school year. But Scott said the project was delayed due to legal issues regarding acquisition of the land, which is owned by the City of Macomb. He said the city eventually granted a permanent easement.
The goal now is to complete the monument in time for homecoming in October.
Scott said the red brick welcome wall at the site will be moved to near Ball Fore on Macomb’s west side.