Calhoun CC To Unveil New Growth Plan For Huntsville Branch
If at first you don’t succeed try again, and Calhoun Community College is doing just that as it seeks state approval to expand.
Skyrocketing enrollment at Calhoun’s Huntsville branch is the latest focus of the school’s revised growth plan. The proposal will be unveiled before the state board of education on Thursday, almost one year after board members shot down a similar plan.
Calhoun officials told WHNT News 19 that the revised blueprint has all construction and renovation taking place at the current branch site on Wynn Drive. The $35 million project would add roughly 50,000 square feet of space along with more than 700 parking spots.
But there may be a catch to Calhoun’s wishes. The plan still needs approval from a board that rejected last year’s proposal by a tally of 5-3. The prior version that was defeated called for construction on 50 acres of land located in another part of Research Park, and was ultimately squashed when some board members expressed concerns that the new site would draw students away from the main hub in Decatur. Yet Calhoun officials were optimistic that the latest edition would go through.
“We did what the board asked us to do,” said Calhoun Community College spokeswoman Janet Martin. “We went back and looked at an option that would be more in line with using the existing campus, which we’ve done. We have a good feeling about it, just from initial conversations.”
Board members will review the proposal at a regularly scheduled work session on Thursday. A vote on the plan is set for later this month.
Calhoun Community College officials said total enrollment has gone up by roughly 84 percent over the last five years.