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ETSU community holds groundbreaking ceremony for Culp renovations

Brandon Paykamian • Updated Apr 27, 2018 at 6:11 PM

East Tennessee State University campus officials and students gathered Friday evening for a groundbreaking event ahead of renovations to the D.P. Culp University Center.

The project, in which major construction will start by the end of May after some interior renovations, is still projected to cost around $45.5 million, and should be finished by December 2019 or January 2020, according to campus officials.

Changes will include major renovations to the interior, where retail and food services will be moved to the first floor, and student services, such as the Student Organization Resource Center, will join the ETSU Multicultural Center in the building’s second floor.

But some of the most notable changes will be to the building’s exterior, which will include more windows to allow more natural light into the building. In March, Sam Mayhew, assistant vice president for student affairs, said this will be a departure from the center’s “current brutalist architectural style.”

The groundbreaking event was held in the long walkway between the Culp Center and Borchuck Plaza. Speakers included ETSU President Brian Noland, Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Joe Sherlin, 2017-18 Student Government Association President Keyana Miller and 2018-19 SGA President Megha Gupta.

“This project began because of the vision of our students, and I want to say thanks to our SGA administration from 2014-15, who first brought this proposal forward,” Noland said. “It’s a sign that time is moving fast.” 

At the ceremony’s end, members of the campus community took what was, for many, their last walk down the interior ramp, which will be removed during renovations. 

For more information on the center’s renovation plans, visit www.etsu.edu/facilities/dp_culp.php.

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