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The Eastern Echo Wednesday, June 12, 2024 | Print Archive
The Eastern Echo

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Michigan Legislature approves Roosevelt Hall Renovation

On Nov. 2, 2023, the Michigan Legislature approved the annual capital outlay request for Eastern Michigan University’s renovation of Roosevelt Hall.

The request, approved by the EMU Board of Regents on Oct. 19, will cost an estimated $42.5 million. The State of Michigan will provide $30 million in funding, and the university is set to cover the remaining $12.5 million.

In order for the project to proceed, approval is still needed from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. 

This is due to Michigan legislation deciding on what budgets to adopt every year. Beginning Oct. 1 and ending Sept. 30. of the following year, fiscal year budget hearings are held. 

The state of Michigan has three funds: a general fund that is spent on majority infrastructure and other health and human services; a school aid fund that is used for public schooling and some secondary schooling; and a “rainy day” fund that is reserved for savings. In Michigan’s university proposals, the renovation of Roosevelt Hall was listed as the top project. 

The university emphasized that students should not be concerned by the cost of renovations.  

“Eastern Michigan University is committed to keeping tuition costs affordable for our students,” said Melissa Thrasher, director of media relations for EMU. “This project will not impact tuition prices or any other financial subsidies.”

EMU's GameAbove College of Engineering and Technology Growth program’s project expansion was Phase I of university renovations. Once approved by the governor, Roosevelt Hall’s renovations will be Phase II of the expansion.

Phase II of Eastern Michigan University’s renovations will aim to resolve several structural issues. These issues include, but are not limited to, roofing, repairing and revamping room layouts, repairing insulation by improving internal building envelope systems, and replacing energy-inefficient windows. Renovations will also seek to improve ADA accommodations and expand the existing area to approximately 75,000 square feet.

The college's program is on track to expand 65% in the next 15 years as demand for the engineering trade expands. The expansion project is in an effort to prepare the university for that expected growth, as well as draw in more students to the university as years follow.