Spoon River College owns the building needed for its new campus in Macomb. And there is plenty of parking available. What's missing is the construction money it hoped to get from the state for renovating the building.
So President Curt Oldfield said the college is studying whether a different approach might help move things along.
“Right now we are working with our Foundation to start thinking about what would be needed for a capital campaign to be in place,” he said.
As recently as a year ago SRC still hoped the state would provide at least three-quarters of the cost, which Oldfield pegged at about $14 million based on preliminary estimates from architects.
Even with the capital campaign, SRC would still expect outside funding support. Oldfield called it “a three-legged revenue concept” with the capital campaign money supplemented by state funding and federal grants.
“(A successful campaign) would show local connectivity to the project and the importance to the community,” Oldfield said. “The state’s portion would be smaller because we have more local matching money, and then using federal funds to enhance that project will finish it out.”
The new campus would be located at 2500 East Jackson Street. SRC is using a small portion of the building right now as a community outreach center but much of the space remains empty. The building, which was once a furniture store, would give SRC about twice as much classroom space as it currently has in Macomb.
The college’s current Macomb campus is in the former high school building at South Johnson and West Washington Streets. Oldfield said the college will not allow that building to go to waste once it relocates.
“It’s too nice of a building to leave empty so we’ll be bringing those plans along too of what we would do with that facility.”