Henderson to build new dining facility

Dining Facility Drawing

Aug. 30, 2011

Henderson State University will soon start construction on a new dining center. The 20,000-square-foot facility will be built along the ravine between Foster Hall and the Garrison Center. Funding has been approved, and the project is expected to get started within 90 days.

The Caddo Center currently serves as the campus dining facility. It was built in 1949 and has the capacity for 350 diners. The new dining hall will seat approximately 645. A 29 percent increase in freshmen during the past two years has made a new dining facility a priority for the university. “A record on-campus enrollment this year, added to the condition of the 64-year-old building, has placed this project at the top of Henderson’s master plan for construction,” said Bobby Jones, interim president. He said the Caddo Center will remain open while the new dining facility is built.

The new facility will feature several serving stations, a modernized kitchen and banquet facilities. Plans also call for an outside seating area overlooking the ravine.

Henderson received authorization from the Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board to construct the new facility and selected SCM Architects PLLC to prepare the plans. The contractor will be selected using the bid process. The estimated cost of the new building, including construction, site preparation, fees, furniture, fixtures and equipment is approximately $5,227,000.

ARAMARK, which has been Henderson’s food services provider since 1996, has agreed to fund $2.5 million of the total cost, and will provide $94,000 annually for debt service. The remaining $2.75 million will be financed by a lending institution. In accordance with ADHE guidelines, $1.25 per square foot will be placed into a deferred maintenance account on an annual basis to maintain the building.

Completion of the project is expected within 18 months.


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