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College Will Update Facilities Master Plan

WINTERVILLE—Pitt Community College Trustees have agreed to update the college’s facilities master plan, which will guide future growth on the main campus in the years ahead.

On Wednesday, PCC Vice President of Administrative Services Rick Owens outlined the process for updating the plan, which was originally created in 2004 and updated five years later.

“We’ve completed nearly all of the short-term projects outlined in the 2009 plan,” Owens said. “As PCC continues to be the most crowded of North Carolina’s 58 community colleges, it’s vital that we use the space we have wisely and plan for the future accordingly.”

Since the 2009 update, PCC has opened the Herman Simon, Charles Russell and Craig M. Goess Construction and Industrial Technology buildings. A new facilities services complex and campus police department were also constructed, along with a 15,000-square-foot addition to the Craig F. Goess Student Center to house the college bookstore, a computer lab and career center.

PCC broke ground on a new Science and Technology Center in October, and Owens said construction is well underway.

Despite the new additions to campus, Owens said PCC remains the state’s most-crowded community college. Even after the 75,000-square-foot science building has been completed, he said Pitt would average roughly 60 square feet of instructional space per student. It’s an improvement from when Pitt averaged 48 square feet per student in 2005 but is still a long way from the North Carolina Community College System average of 106 square feet.

Over the next six months or so, Owens said Boomerang Design (formerly MBAJ Architecture) will conduct surveys, studies, interviews and focus group meetings to develop an updated plan for growth at PCC, which is the state’s seventh-largest community college. The process, he said, will require input from faculty and staff regarding future space needs for programs, services and equipment.

Owens said one of the focal points of the new master plan involves development of a prioritized plan to address sidewalks, crosswalks, bike lanes and pedestrian walkways on campus. The plan will also address new construction on the western part of campus (known as the Bowen Farm property) over the next 5-8 years, access to the college’s Davenport Farm property, and analysis of PCC’s existing buildings and needs.

PCC has come a long way since it was founded as Pitt Technical Institute in 1961. The college opened the Vernon White Building—it’s first—three years later, and the original campus included 75 acres on Highway 11 South. At that time, the college had 98 students.


01/29/2016