Construction, Education, and Technology

College begins $12.7M tech expansion

December 11, 2019
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GRCC ATC Building
Courtesy GRCC

A college’s $12.7 million project to renovate and expand its technology academic building is underway.

Grand Rapids Community College is renovating the 25-year-old Wisner-Bottrall Applied Technology Center, 151 Fountain St. NE, which houses classrooms and labs for academic programs including workforce development and arts and sciences.

The project includes renovation of about 20,000 square feet within the existing facility and an expansion of about 20,000 square feet.

The ATC building measured 175,000 square feet before renovations.

Of the two-story addition, one floor is devoted to the CNC machining programs, and another is for computer information systems, including cybersecurity.

GRCC also will expand capacity in the computer numerical control lab, necessary for students looking for jobs such as manufacturing engineering technicians, tool and die makers, mold makers or CNC programmers.

GRCC said it needs to provide more capacity to meet the demands of the growing information technology and manufacturing sectors. Although some space within the ATC has been revamped over the years, the manufacturing and IT areas haven’t kept up with the changing times.

Adding a new lab and upgrading equipment will augment overall capacity and increase the number of students earning the credentials necessary to land good-paying jobs, GRCC said.

The state government is contributing $6.3 million toward the project, which was the college’s top priority for capital outlay funding consideration. The construction authorization was included in the state’s fiscal year 2019 budget.

The college is covering the remainder of the costs through its “A Broader Vision” capital campaign.

Triangle is the construction manager on the project. Fishbeck is providing architecture and design services.

The project is expected to be completed in 2021, but the two-story addition will be ready for occupancy in fall 2020.

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