• 30°

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College seeks bond referendum support for $45 million project

SALISBURY – Rowan-Cabarrus Community College is working to drum up support for a bond referendum and a $45 million project on their North Campus in Salisbury.

The Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Board of Trustees in September passed a resolution to support construction of a technology education complex on their North Campus and is asking for a bond referendum to fund construction of the project. And representatives of the college appeared at the Rowan County commissioners meeting this week to ask for their support. Commissioners in turn directed county staff to create a resolution of support that would be ready by the first meeting in November.

The college specifically asked for support for a referendum on the March ballot to support construction of a 105,000-square-foot facility and renovated space that’s proposed to be complete by 2024. It would be known as the technology education complex. Plans would relocate multiple programs.

“The technology education complex will include facilities for the fire decontamination program, career and college promise building, automotive, welding and machining programs as well as digital design,” said Sarah Walker, executive director of Governance, Foundation Operations and Public Information.

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College President Carol Spalding told commissioners this week that the project would align the institution better with its partners and build a “more sustainable future” for the community.

Spalding said the last classroom building that the county funded at the North Campus was more than 40 years ago.

“We think we’re due,” she said.

 

The college says the investment would allow it to offer “cutting-edge” programs to meet the needs of new industries and strengthen the working relationship with local educational entities. More specifically, it hopes to provide facilities for high-tech jobs in fields such as robotic and virtual welding, advanced machining and automotive technology.

College representatives told the Post the proposed bond referendum would help Rowan-Cabarrus expand and enhance technical programs, support dual-credit programs that allow high school students to participate in career and technical education through the early college and Career and College Promise programs and also develop what would be a first-of-its-kind fire training facility focused on firefighter safety.

Facilities will be open in time as long as the bond referendum appears on the March ballot, said Craig Lamb, vice president of Corporate and Continuing Education.

This is a big and critical project for the community and to continue meeting the needs of the county as a whole, Walker said.

“Even in a time when unemployment is low, enrollment is up 6%, making the college the eighth largest of the 58 community colleges in the state,” Walker said in a news release sent to the Post.

Plans for the bond referendum are currently being discussed with Rowan County commissioners, and the college says it’s hopeful the effort will receive support from the community.

“In the coming months, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College will work to inform Rowan County residents about the immediate and positive impacts these projects will have on our community and its citizens,” a news release stated.

Walker, on behalf of the college, said she is excited about this opportunity and being able to be able to better serve the community.

Lamb said there’s been no decision yet about what will go into the buildings currently housing the automotive and machining programs if the bond referendum passes and the technology education complex is built. Lamb said that those affiliated with the project would also address any vacated spaces or buildings from relocated programs with newer programs.

Comments

Coronavirus

County records 19 COVID-19 deaths this week

Health

NC panel backs governor’s ‘guiding principles’ on health improvements

Nation/World

Former Make-A-Wish Iowa CEO charged with embezzling funds

Education

N.C. colleges report first wave of COVID-19 cases as semester begins

News

Reactions from the sports world to the death of Hank Aaron

Sports

Panthers new GM Fitterer plans to ‘be in on every deal’

Coronavirus

Congregate facilities record COVID-19 deaths, county sees equal number of new cases, recoveries

BREAKING NEWS

Teen found dead on Grove Street, another dies from gunshot wound while being airlifted

Nation/World

Hank Aaron, baseball’s one-time home run king, dies at 86

Crime

Blotter: Shots fired into West Lafayette Street home

Business

CEO of Economic Partnership details state’s economic development future with Rowan Chamber

Nation/World

McConnell working to push impeachment trial to February

Coronavirus

‘An opportunity to be a blessing:’ St. Luke Missionary Baptist hosting COVID-19 relief program

Crime

Blotter: Jan. 21

Nation/World

Biden orders halt on all border wall construction

Local

Bike accommodations, parking continue to be points of discussion in proposed Downtown Main Street plan

News

More than a million gallons of gas spilled in nature preserve near Huntersville

Education

Catawba College starts classes on campus Monday, later than usual

Coronavirus

Small number of NC vaccine doses thrown out, official says

Coronavirus

COVID-19 deaths, hospital bed usage continue rising in Rowan County

Crime

Former paramedic charged with embezzling a controlled substance

Crime

For third time, convenience store robbed after man asks for Newport cigarettes

Education

New RSS Superintendent Watlington reflects on first week in office

Education

Education briefs: Hood Theological Seminary holding virtual lecture series