Friday, August 14, 2009
sponsored by Graue Inc.

Media gets tour of new Lincoln Center at Lincoln College

Opening set for the end of this year

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[August 14, 2009]  Thursday morning at 10:30, officials at Lincoln College offered a media tour of the new Lincoln Center, under construction on the north side of the Lincoln College campus.

Stating in a press release that the college was proud to unveil the final stages of work at the center, Lincoln College President John Hutchinson told the gathering: "We believe the new Athletic and Convocation Center and the larger space for the Lincoln Heritage Museum are absolutely critical to the success of Lincoln College, both in terms of student recruitment and in our desire to have a positive impact in the local community." Hutchinson said again what he said at the groundbreaking in June of last year: "We feel this is the most important building in the last 100 years to be built on this campus."

John Bishop, senior project architect of the Farnsworth Group, is a Lincoln College alumnus from the Class of 1990 and led the media through the work in progress.

Although the exterior work is near completion, crews of drywallers and installers were about the building, turning the rooms into a finished product.

Hutchinson indicated after the tour that he is continually surprised by the amount of work that gets done on a weekly basis. "I come here frequently and see significant and dramatic changes every time I visit," he said.

The Lincoln Center will be used as a community facility to house athletic events, concerts and fine arts performances, exhibits, a fitness center, and the Lincoln Heritage Museum.

The Athletic and Convocation Center is expected to open by the end of the year, with Hutchinson stating a date of early December, and the Lynx will begin hosting athletic events in January 2010. The first commencement ceremony will be held for the graduating Class of 2010 in May. The museum will be completed later, with a grand reopening planned sometime in 2011.

"The arena and fitness center will aid us in attracting students to Lincoln College and in reaching our enrollment goals," Hutchinson said. "The Lincoln Center will be available to the public through fitness center memberships and will be a great venue in which to schedule and attend special events. The museum is already nationally recognized, and the expanded exhibit space and events that can be held there will bring additional prestige and tourism to the Lincoln area."

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Some key features of the facility are its state-of-the-art wrestling practice room and the ability to adapt the main gymnasium for basketball, wrestling, volleyball and even fine arts performances. The design and construction of the Lincoln Center incorporates several "green building" features, such as recycled content in ceilings, insulation and concrete components; using parking lot demolition waste in the fill-in construction of the building pad rather than diverting to a landfill; and using all low-VOC materials in paints, adhesives, carpets and sealants, to protect air quality.

The new museum area, which will be six times larger than the old museum, will also have state-of-the-art humidity controls, allowing the museum to receive artifacts from other museums that include such climate controls in their criteria for lending out valuable items.

Hutchinson said the college has already raised over $6 million toward construction of the Athletic/Convocation Center and museum as part of an overall comprehensive capital campaign, with another $4 million remaining to be raised. A variety of sponsorships, such as commemorative brick pavers, valued from $250 to $1,000, as well as naming and endowment opportunities valued from $10,000 to $2 million, are available to sponsors who would like to donate toward the completion of the Lincoln Center.

Other ongoing fundraising efforts are also available for those wishing to support scholarships, museum collections and development, campus technology enhancements, faculty enrichment, the McKinstry Library, and other campus needs.

At the conclusion of the tour, Hutchinson confirmed that the Lincoln Center will be finished as scheduled and as planned without any delays due to funding.

[Text from files received from Lincoln College; LDN staff]

Lincoln Center media tour -- in pictures

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