According to NewsWest 9, that $45 million will be used to upgrade the Mesa Building which is almost 50 years old.

"This $45 million will allow us to do a complete refresh and update in time for [the building's] 50th birthday," said Sandra Woodley, president of UTPB. "So as we celebrate our 50th anniversary, we'll be able to really completely update one of our most important academic buildings on the campus."

The upgrades include updating the elevators and even adding a third elevator, updating classrooms, and adding outdoor learning spaces.

"So having the technology in the classrooms, indoors and outdoors, and having spaces that are safe and beautiful and functional and modern," said Woodley. "We deserve that in this community, our students deserve that, and we’re really happy to be able to deliver that with this funding."

Once Abbott signs the bill, UTPB will get to work on the upgrades and hopefully have them done in 2-3 years.

"Some of them, we'll be able to get started sooner rather than later," said Woodley. "I suspect it’ll take every bit of the two and half years to complete, maybe even three, to complete all of the work from this bill, but that’s pretty par for the course I think in these large projects."

UTPB is hoping the upgrades will bring more students and faculty to the campus.

"It’s more than just the classrooms that benefit," Woodley said. "It’s our ability to go out and recruit and retain the talented students and faculty and staff that are needed here in the Permian Basin. Our primary goal is to double the number of people who get a degree from our institution."

No word was given on when renovations would begin once the bill is signed.

 

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