NMU appropriately investing dollars in campus, product

Northern Michigan University is continuing with the Harden Hall renovation as well as the Science Complex Research and Teaching Labs addition.

The NMU Board of Trustees late last week approved continued funding the projects which, according to Vice President for Finance and Administration Gavin Leach, are key movements in upgrading and modernizing the university’s academic mall.

“They also demonstrate our continued effort to create the best learning and working environment possible for our students, faculty and staff,” Leach noted.

We agree.

According to an NMU press release, over the past two years, the board had approved funding requests for various phases of the renovation: programmatic and schematic architectural work and the hiring of a construction manager; full architectural and construction drawings; and the estimated costs to complete the project.

These totaled about $33 million, but the final project bid came in significantly higher at nearly $40 million — later reduced to $37 million.

Leach also requested that trustees approve $14.1 million for remaining construction costs associated with the research and teaching labs addition to the Science Complex. They had previously agreed to budget $550,000 for pre-construction costs.

Times are tough and budgets tight. Everyone in the room can agree on that.

However, NMU must continually take steps to improve itself — and the product it offers — if it is going to continue to be competitive.

These were expected, and appropriate, expenditures.


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