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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Historical Group Celebrating 25 Years With Party

From the Item:
Charged with the task of researching and preserving local history, the Walker County Historical Commission has been the key to maintaining that history and educating residents and visitors alike about the area’s past. After several decades of service, the commission has become a part of the very history it treasures and will celebrate its 25th anniversary on Sunday with a party after their regular meeting at 3 p.m.

The event is free and open to the public, as are all of the WCHC meetings, which are held on the third Sunday of each month. All of the meetings, as well as the anniversary celebration, are held at the Gibbs-Powell House/Museum on 11th Street.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Take the elevator up to the mezzanine, press box

The July 10 edition of the Item discusses some of the changes to the exterior of Bowers Stadium.
The five-year, three-phase renovation project for Sam Houston State's Bowers Stadium has been completed with the addition of an elevator to the press box for the 14,000-seat facility.

In the past few years, other changes have included a new playing surface, a video scoreboard, new lockers for the football team and dressing room improvements. The new elevator runs along the left side of the ticket booth at the main entrance. In order to even out the look of the building, a false shaft was added to the right side, providing large storage closets on each level of the press box.

The project began in 2004 when the old press level was turned into fan suites and the president's box was expanded. Those changes brought about the need to upgrade the fire codes for the facility. The second phase consisted of installing fire alarms, sprinkler systems and suitable exit doors in the building to assure it met the safety code standards.

The elevator was added to keep the press box in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The front of Bowers Stadium has a new look besides the elevator and false shaft. The ticket booth now was a metal awning and the entrance to the elevator is enclosed with numerous windows and marble flooring.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Gaertner Outlines SHSU’s 10-Year Plan

The Item reports that SHSU President James Gaertner outlined SHSU's 10-year master plan to the Huntsville Rotary Club during its weekly meeting Wednesday at West Hill Mall; topics included:
He covered classroom space — current and what is needed — housing, parking — current and what is needed — and athletics and intramurals, where an additional 10 acres are needed.

Gaertner said nothing in particular stands out about the plan, which covers the entire campus and includes a new student center, replacing the Lowman Student Center.

“If anything would stand out, it would be the South Quad area that has all the new academic buildings and creates a new academic quadrangle on campus,” he said. “The whole plan is important.

Gaertner said the LSC was built in the early 1960s and “it has gotten to the point where it’s getting outdated and needs to come down. It was renovated about eight or nine years ago.

“We won’t tear it down until three or four years from now. It will come down. It needs to. We will build a new student center right there in the same place in the middle of the campus.”

Some of the housing buildings scheduled to be demolished include Smith-Kirkley, Recital Hall, White Hall, Allen House, Vick House, Sorority Hill, Art Complex, Thomason Building, and Barrett House.

New buildings scheduled to be constructed on the SHSU campus include agriculture, forensic science, college of business, biology and allied health, integrated engineering and criminal justice expansion.

“We hope to build a couple of residential halls,” he said. They are included in a six-year plan along with intramural fields which would be moved to where the agriculture center is now located off Interstate 45. All ag center facilities would be moved to the location off state Highway 75 North [Gibbs Ranch].

Gaertner said the campus will take on a new look in upcoming years, but “it has changed a lot. It has changed from when I was a student. Over the past 10 years it has changed some and the next 10 years it will change again."