Richland to lease new facility to expand opportunities in Clinton

2012-11-21T00:01:00Z 2012-11-26T13:53:50Z Richland to lease new facility to expand opportunities in ClintonBy CHRIS LUSVARDI - H&R Staff Writer Herald-Review.com
November 21, 2012 12:01 am  • 

DECATUR — Richland Community College moved one step closer Tuesday to building a 4,000-square-foot extension facility in Clinton.

The college’s board of trustees approved a 10-year lease agreement along with two five-year options that would give it a location in a development just off U.S. 51 near Clinton High School.

Richland is the first tenant to commit to the Douglas Subdivision development in which the city of Clinton has invested about $700,000 to attract new businesses.

“We’re going to be the first ones in there,” said Doug Brauer, Richland vice president of economic development. “We become a very significant anchor for that area.”

The facility would help Richland reach students in the northern part of its district.

“We have a real opportunity in Clinton to grow our presence there,” said Dale Colee, Richland board chairman.

Visibility off U.S. 51 was one of the factors in determining the location for the center, Brauer said.

“It will be very visible,” Brauer said. “People will know the college is going to be there.”

Richland would include classroom and other space similar to its extension center in Decatur’s Fairview Park Plaza, Brauer said. With a new facility, Brauer said it would be able to offer dual credit, transfer courses and community education such as dance, culinary arts and other special-interest classes.

Richland’s extension center in Clinton is located in the high school, which Brauer said constricts the hours it can be open, including being closed on evenings and weekends. Brauer said those times are usually most convenient in terms of class scheduling, particularly for community education classes.

“It’s just the right location to expand our presence there,” Brauer said. “We’re trying to take away some of those barriers. It’s our space at this point.”

The approximately $1.6 million lease agreement with Landmark Homes LLC is subject to Illinois Community College Board approval. If approved, Brauer said construction could begin as soon as December, with hopes to have it completed and ready to begin offering classes in fall 2013.

Although Richland will start off by leasing the facility, Brauer said the option to buy it remains a possibility.

clusvardi@herald-review.com|421-7972

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(1) Comments

  1. Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce
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    Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce - November 28, 2012 11:52 am
    The Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce is extremely pleased with this news. The prospect of a 4,000 square-foot extension facility located in Clinton will be one more positive economic draw for our community. Richland Community College is a member of the Clinton Chamber, and we look forward to helping them promote the new Clinton facility.
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