News

Legislation would make Armstrong project a reality

January 24, 2012

A conceptual drawing by the Leo A. Daly architecture firm envisions the renovation and expansion of the Armstrong Physical Education Building. A conceptual drawing by the Leo A. Daly architecture firm envisions the renovation and expansion of the Armstrong Physical Education Building.

If a bill passes the Nebraska State Legislature this session, Chadron State College will have the money needed to expand and renovate the Armstrong Physical Education Building.

Sen. John Harms of Scottsbluff and Sen. Lavon Heidemann of Elk Creek on Jan. 17 introduced LB 1019, which, if passed, would allocate more than $22 million for facility projects at CSC and Peru State College, both members of the Nebraska State College System. The legislation calls for $13,702,750 for the Armstrong project. Peru State College’s football stadium, the Oak Bowl, would benefit from the remaining $8,602,400.

“We are very thankful that Sen. Harms and Sen. Heidemann recognize the need to improve these facilities, and appreciate their work to improve our offerings for students,” said Dr. Janie Park, CSC president. “Both the Armstrong Building and the Oak Bowl are showing their age and do not meet the needs of our athletic programs and their many other uses.”

Park said she will join NSCS chancellor Stan Carpenter, Peru State president Daniel Hansen and student-athletes in a scheduled visit to the appropriations committee Tuesday, Jan. 31. Park said funds from the bill, along with money from the Chadron State Foundation’s Vision 2011 fundraising campaign, would provide the finances needed to renovate and expand the aging Armstrong Building.

The Armstrong renovation and expansion is one of two facility projects that were included in Vision 2011, the foundation’s first-ever multi-million-dollar comprehensive campaign. In October 2011, the foundation announced that more than $16 million had been raised in the $11 million effort.

According to the plans, most of the existing Armstrong Building, which opened in 1964, will be retained, with the new construction adjoining the existing facility to the south.

The new facility will include a 22,600-square-foot arena with seating for 2,900 spectators, and more than double the size of the existing structure. In addition to the new arena, the plan includes space for classrooms, offices for athletic and sports medicine staff, locker rooms, concessions, ticket sales and storage.

—Justin Haag, CSC Information Services