Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
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Texas A&M-Corpus Christi breaks ground on arts & media facility

May 20, 2024
The $81 million, 85,000-square-foot facility will enable the university's music and theater programs to expand.

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi has broken ground on a $81 million, 85,000-square-foot arts and media facility.

The Corpus Christi Caller Times reports that the building will have a 325-seat proscenium theater, a 200-seat recital hall, a black box theater and a dance studio, as well as rehearsal space and theater labs for costume construction and makeup. 

"The current building is something that was built in the late '70s, and we have outgrown it," said Diana Sipes, director of the School of Arts, Media, & Communications. "It was built for many different departments to all be housed together."

The university's Performing Arts Center stage is not designed for theater. Originally, the university had planned for a "phase two" of the Performing Arts Center to add the appropriate academic space, but that project never materialized.

The new facility will address those needs. The additional space will enable the music and theater programs to further expand, potentially doubling music major enrollment.

When theater and music programs move into the new building, the university plans to repurpose parts of the Center for the Arts and improve spaces for fine arts programs.

Both the music and theater programs at the university have doubled in size in recent years. The theater program has a 100% job placement rate. But because of the condition of the existing facilities, accreditation was in jeopardy, University President Kelly Miller said.

"The educational space here pales in comparison to almost every other higher ed institute in the state, and most of the high schools that our students come from," Miller said.

Program growth has happened in spite of facilities due to the dedication and talent of faculty, Miller said.

Funds on hand will provide for the shell of spaces in the building. The proscenium theater has a room and a stage, but as of now, no funding is in place for lighting, sound or seats, Miller said.

About the Author

Mike Kennedy | Senior Editor

Mike Kennedy has been writing about education for American School & University since 1999. He also has reported on schools and other topics for The Chicago Tribune, The Kansas City Star, The Kansas City Times and City News Bureau of Chicago. He is a graduate of Michigan State University.

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