After being away from JMU for the summer it seems as if current construction projects, such as D-Hall and the new hotel and conference center, have popped up over night.
JMU’s strategic plan, called The Madison Plan, is a six-year plan for development at the University until 2020. The plan, which began in 2014 with the construction of the Student Success Center (SSC) and D-Hall, is to secure JMU as the national model for the engaged university.
One of the new buildings on campus is Madison Hall across from SSC. Madison Hall, which opened in April, is the new home of admissions which moved from Sonner Hall next to Newman Lake.
Madison Hall is the new spot for prospective students and families to start their tours led by Student Ambassadors. Previously, some tours were moved to begin at Festival Hall on East Campus because of the lack of space in Sonner Hall. But now that Madison Hall can accommodate for larger groups, all tours start from the same location.
Aside from the new home for admissions, Madison Hall also houses offices for graduate school, the center for global engagement for study abroad opportunities and an accelerator lab for Physics students.
Next to Madison Hall will be the new Madison Hotel and conference center set to open in May of 2018.
The hotel will feature 230 rooms, an indoor pool, a farm to table restaurant, coffee and wine bar, an exhibit hall and conference and ballrooms. Once opened, JMU’s hospitality students will have working opportunities within the hotel.
Another building that is beginning to take shape on campus is the new D-Hall. Set to open in the fall of 2018, the new D-Hall will have three stories. According to an article published by the Breeze in May 2016, the first floor will be a food court that will include the ever popular Chick-Fil-A, Qdoba, Steak ‘n Shake and Freshens Food Studio, similar to the one currently in UREC.
The first floor of D-Hall will also have a space similar to Market One with food options ranging from BBQ to a deli to a place to purchase coffee.
The second floor of DHall will have the all-you-care-to-eat option that makes JMU’s EHall and DHall so popular and the third floor will have a banquet space for special events.
If you’re a big fan of Mrs. Green’s, make sure to get your fill before the end of the school year. Chandler Hall is set to be torn down by next May of 2018 to make room for the new College of Business set to open in 2021.
COB 2020 is a plan to open the new College of Business Learning Complex, an expansion and renovation to the current Zane Showker Hall. The complex will have two-times the amount of square footage Showker currently houses.
Last year, JMU announced the plans for a new Convocation Center. If the fundraising goal of $12 million is met in time, the new Convo Center plans to be complete by 2020. It will seat 8,600 people complete with an arena experience of club level lounges and student lounges.
With the largest incoming freshman class JMU has ever had, there is certainly a need for more housing.
A new residence hall is in the works to be built on the old softball field behind UREC. The dorm will feature 500 beds.
Of course, there’s always a need for more parking! Construction for a new parking deck for commuters is planned for 2018. It will be located by Memorial Hall on Grace Street. The deck, which will be in use for students by 2019, will be much needed after the construction of the Madison Hotel is completed, as the parking deck on Mason Street will be designated mainly for hotel guests.
Photos by Carrie Chang.