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18 September 2007

Little River Canyon
Growing Like a Weed

JSU faculty takes time to inspect LRC Center after leading the Canyon Hike in perfect Saturday weather. (From left to right: Doug Clark (Art), Eryn Oft (Music), Raina Kostova (English), Kelly Gregg (Geography), Jonathan Herbert(Geography) and Teje Sult (Technology).


LITTLE RIVER CANYON NATIONAL PRESERVE—Finally, last week, it rained in Northeast Alabama and coincidentally, plants weren’t the only thing that started to grow. Just after the recent precipitation JSU’s Little River Canyon Center has sprouted up like a weed.


During the week of September 10th, the building’s East Wing was poured, a 30 foot atrium was assembled using a heavy timber-frame construction, and the wall-studs for JSU offices, public restrooms, the library, auditorium and three classrooms were all assembled.


“Beautiful views are now framed-out by the early stages of windows, doors and hallways” said project director Pete Conroy, “and while only a fraction of the work has been completed, the project has come to life in a really dramatic and delightful way”.


Construction for the 25,000 square foot, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) project began on July 11th and if the current level of progress is maintained, it will be opened to the public in January of 2009. Office spaces for the National Park Service ,  a gift shop, and full-scale museum are slated for floors and walls in late September.


“This place is huge,” said Head of the Biology Department Dr. Frank Romano “and we’ll have plenty of space for school groups, university classes, visitors and meetings.”


“J.S.U. will have the potential to operate the best environmental education center in the Southeast.” said Dr. Kelly Gregg “The Art and Music Faculty are looking forward to offering classes, workshops and concerts.”


For more information about construction or financial donations to the LRC Center, please contact Pete Conroy, Director of JSU’s EPIC and Field Schools at 256-782-8010.

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