LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Mark Huizenga on Wednesday supported enhancement projects for Grand Valley State University and Grand Rapids Community College during a hearing of the Joint Capital Outlay Appropriations Subcommittee.
“I am proud to support these local projects to help Grand Valley State University and Grand Rapids Community College make these important improvements that will enhance the education of their students for years to come,” said Huizenga, R-Walker.
Senate Bill 78 provides planning authorization for 28 projects at many of Michigan’s universities and community colleges for up to $606.68 million, with the state of Michigan providing $250 million and the institutions providing $356.8 million.
The bill includes $30 million toward the construction of a $75 million new 130,000-square-foot GVSU Blue Dot Lab located at Grand Valley State University’s Allendale campus that will house GVSU’s focus on multi-disciplinary digital literacy.
“This innovative project will help students explore, learn, and develop the additional digital skills and knowledge that the 21st century workforce requires,” Huizenga said. “The facility will feature global classrooms that will allow students to collaborate with institutions from around the world and an emerging technology hub where GVSU staff and students will research up-and-coming technologies and partner with industry leaders to beta test the new technologies.”
SB 78 also provides $16 million for a $32 million renovation and repurposing of Grand Rapids Community College’s Learning Resource Center located downtown Grand Rapids. The 77,368-square-foot project includes 61,268 square feet of renovation and a 16,100 addition. Once complete, the center will support student counseling, disability support services, the testing center, and share collaboration space in addition to the building’s current occupants.
“This project will significantly improve the teaching and learning environment at GRCC and help attract more talent to the school and to our region,” Huizenga said. “Renovation of the Learning Resource Center will allow GRCC to transform the traditional static academic library model and facilitate a new vision for student support and academic success.”
SB 78 now heads to the full Senate Appropriations Committee for consideration.