‘Nothing will be recognizable after that’: Amarillo College receives building permits to start construction on bond projects

Published: Dec. 6, 2021 at 8:56 PM CST
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Amarillo College has recently received the building permits for construction on its Washington Street campus.

These construction projects comes as part of a $89.2 million voter-approved bond from 2019.

The building permits recently received were for Russell Hall and the Carter Fitness Center.

Another project they have been working on is the College Union Building, which is close to being done, but the timeline has been delayed due to supply chain issues stemming from COVID-19.

Demolition has been completed for the fitness center and construction has started.

The building is being almost completely gutted with the only thing staying is the floors.

AC’s Master Plan Program Manager, Danny Smith, says nothing will be recognizable after construction.

“We’re adding 23 feet to the South end of the building, so it’s going to be two story, it’s going to be all glass, looking South out into Memorial Park, so upstairs we’re going to have our cardio fitness center, the treadmills, bicycles and all that kind of stationary stuff,” said Smith.

Downstairs they will also have things such as, spin, CrossFit and weights.

Amarillo College says its return of intercollegiate sports has played a big role in the renovations of the fitness center as it will house the new volleyball team.

“We will have a great volleyball arena in there, the floors are going to be whitewashed, so just the volleyball court stands out very well, new score boards, video boards and things like that were looking at we’re actually calling it the arena because its going to be so much nicer than it used to be,” said Smith.

The college hopes the new arena will bring in some school spirit.

“A really good school spirit to the campus, we’ll have games and competitions in the carter fitness so hopefully our students and the community will all come together and watch the games and just be a part of something good that’s happening at Amarillo College,” said Chris Sharp, vice president of business affairs, AC.

The athletic portion of the center is scheduled to be completed in late July, early August, pending supply chain issues and then two months later for recreation to start.

Demolition has started to revamp Russell Hall into an enrollment center, but building has not yet started.

“The biggest complaint is we don’t have a front door to our college, so this will be a front door for our students can come in get a one stop shop, type of thing, they can get anything to counseling to student aid to the registrar,” said Sharp.

Russell Hall is on the historic register, so the outside of the building will keep the historical look.

There has been no set completion date yet.

AC believes these projects will help beautify the campus.

“It will increase the looks of our campus, both the buildings, we’ll continue to strive to update our buildings and to bring good education to the community,” said Sharp.

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