Property additions enable GGC to plan for future growth

Two property additions have expanded the Georgia Gwinnett College campus by several acres and provided the young college with endless possibilities. The University System of Georgia Board of Regents voted to accept both properties at its June meeting.

Two property additions have expanded the Georgia Gwinnett College campus by several acres and provided the young college with endless possibilities. The University System of Georgia Board of Regents voted to accept both properties at its June meeting.

“These properties include facilities that can be re-developed to suit the strategic needs of GGC as the college continues to grow,” said Gordon Harrison, president of the GGC Foundation. “This provides GGC with tremendous flexibility for the next several years, and will save significant tax dollars.”

The first property is a 7.7-acre tract across Highway 316 from the main campus, containing a 38,340-square-foot building formerly used as an automobile dealership. The Georgia Department of Transportation acquired the property last year as part of its preparation for the construction of a new interchange at 316 and Collins Hill Road.  As it is no longer advantageous to the DOT to keep the property, the agency transferred it to the college.

GGC had the property appraised at $965,000 and could use it for academic research purposes. Its size and existing building are now included in the institution’s master plan as a spacious resource that could accommodate a variety of uses.

The second tract of about three acres includes part of Building D, owned by the GGC Foundation and already used by the college. The foundation gave the college the portion of the building containing a 45,930-square-foot space originally designed as a warehouse. The $1.7 million property gift also includes parking lot space currently used by the college.

“We are making creative use of existing resources as we plan for accommodating the college’s continued, dramatic growth,” said Eddie Beauchamp, vice president for Facilities and Operations. “Legally, GGC can only modify facilities that it owns. Now that the foundation has given GGC the former warehouse space, we can begin renovating this area as critically needed flex space.”

Planned uses of the former warehouse area include faculty offices in the near term and classrooms later, as the college transitions through different phases of its growth.

“Flex space is vital when an organization is expanding as quickly as GGC,” said Beauchamp. “It provides for the efficient use of resources while enabling the institution to be nimble and responsive to changing needs.”  Multiple uses are considered in the design process for such facilities, he said.

“GGC is very appreciative of the DOT’s consideration of the college’s need for additional property, and for the GGC Foundation’s visionary and strategic approach to providing the college with the ability to make better use of existing facilities,” Harrison said. “Collaborations like these continue to be key to GGC’s success.”

GGC opened its doors to 118 students in 2006. The college expects to enroll about 8,000 students for the 2011 fall semester. It is in the process of hiring enough faculty to accommodate the larger student body, bringing its total staff and faculty to almost 900. 

The deadline to apply for the 2011 fall semester at GGC is July 1.  An open house will be held June 28. Seating is limited.

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