Rendering of multipurpose center planned for Northwest Missouri State University Northwest Missouri State University

Rendering of multipurpose center planned for Northwest Missouri State University.

Northwest Missouri State University is building a multipurpose center

 $21 million facility is scheduled to open in 2018.

Northwest Missouri State University in Maryville is building a $21 million campus multipurpose facility.

The university says its Board of Regents has authorized a construction contract, not to exceed $18,755,00, for the 137,250 square-foot facility, which is tentatively named the Hughes Family Center. The estimated total costs for the project, including estimated financing costs, is $21,075,000. The Carl and Cheryl Hughes family has pledged a significant gift to the project through its family foundation.

The center is expected to include recreation and exhibition space, an indoor flooring system, a 90-yard practice turf, a 300-meter indoor competition track, spectator seating and tiered meeting rooms. A grand opening is targeted for August 2018.

The project represents the largest public-private partnership in the university's 112‐year history.

"This facility has been cited since 2012 as a strategic need," says Northwest President John Jasinski.

The university has outlined four goals for the center: promoting health, wellness and engaged programming for Northwest’s students, faculty and staff as well as the broader community; providing a competitive advantage relative to Northwest’s intercollegiate athletics teams and overall programming; enhancing Northwest’s ability to recruit, retain and engage students; and providing enhanced community partnership opportunities and economic development outcomes.

The project will be designed and constructed according to modern sustainability standards, and the university is aiming to achieve LEED certification.

The center has the potential to host a variety of university and community activities in addition to serving as a practice facility for athletics teams. Club sports and student organizations at Northwest also will use the facility. It may host intercollegiate and high school track meets, community fundraisers, exhibitions, trade shows and business gatherings.

A third-party economic impact study reported the center could provide an additional economic development impact of $23.8 million, the equivalent of creating 946 new jobs, for the region.

Donors have committed about $12.9 million to the project so far through pledge agreements secured by the Northwest Foundation. A remaining $500,000 gap must be raised in the coming year to complete the facility.

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