A haven for Monarchs

CAMPUS CONSTRUCTION – Valley students to get an oasis at the upcoming Monarch Center building.

By Melinda Henricks, Staff Writer

After two years of facing limited food services and few places to hang out, Valley College Students will welcome Monarch Center in Spring 2016. According to school officials, the “heart of the campus” will encompass the cafeteria, bookstore, and a student lounge where students can mingle, relax, dine, and engage.

The 38, 168-square-foot facility will be a split-level building that will offer indoor- and outdoor- dinning.  The lounge area includes two-level atrium. The idea was for the building to “offer sustainability from the ground into the sky,” said Steve Flanigan of LPA Architects.

McCarthy Builders along with LPA Architects “won this design project with creativity” and a vision of what students today desire. The building is covered by a rain canopy that collects rainwater and redistributes the water via a waterfall into the park that runs through, underneath, and around the plaza.  Flanigan said that the “green design plans are essential. Students today want to contribute to the environment.”

One of the attractive features of the building are ceiling glass doors that can be opened in optimum weather and feature many of Valley’s big trees, which has long been the pride of the college.

This mixed use-space has been designed with what the builder describes as “exciting vibrant colors.” There are a variety of choices such as soft chairs, hard spaces, outdoor spaces, quiet spaces, and additional places for games such as ping-pong and billiards. Finally, there will be a place where events can be held as well as club meetings, bands, and fundraising events.

The intention was to provide a “green design plan” with unique features that would hold both interest and comfort for the needs of every student. The colors were designed to give the building both identity and focus. In fact, there are hopes by the builder/architect about the prospect of winning a design award for this project.

After long delays, Valley students will soon have a campus center that has been designed to meet and hopefully exceed their needs. For a video peek at the building, head to:

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