It’s been several years since Spoon River College acquired a former furniture store on East Jackson Street in Macomb, hoping to convert it into its new Macomb campus.
The building would roughly double the amount of classroom space SRC has in Macomb and it would provide better parking. However, much of it remains vacant while the college waits for the state to come through with the money to help pay for the renovation project, and the cost of that work continues to rise.
The projected price tag is now $16,636,000. Brett Stoller, SRC Vice President of Administrative Services, said that’s an increase of 2.2% from one year ago, when the projected cost was a bit more than $16 million.
Stoller said SRC is not sitting still while it waits for the state money. He said the college is looking at what it might have to do to make sure it’s in the building within the next three or four years.
“We are starting to make plans as far as what we could do to possibly do it in phases, and then also working with our foundation to look at possibly doing some fundraising,” Stoller said.
The state is being asked to pick up 75% of the renovation cost, or $12,477,000. The money would come from Resource Allocation and Management Plan (RAMP) funding.
The college will be required to provide a local match $4,159,000.
Stoller said SRC has not received RAMP funding for projects on any of its four campuses since 2001, and he’s not optimistic about receiving the funding this year.
“The Macomb project to finish out the campus on East Jackson has not even made it to the top 50 list of RAMP projects yet,” Stoller said.
The college is also asking for $5,383,100 in RAMP funds to remodel portions of the Taylor and Centers buildings on its Canton campus.