The University of Alabama in Huntsville is ready to skyrocket Huntsville into “college town” status. Recent news of a campus expansion at UAH will bring the university closer to making that dream a reality!
In the news
UAH bought the mostly vacant 58-acre business park for $7.1 million in 2017. Now plans are in the works for what will eventually become a college-oriented district.
Basically, development will focus on the needs and wants of students, faculty and staff. The idea behind the master plan is similar to what other Alabama college towns have created. For example, nearby Tuscaloosa has what is known as “The Strip” while the Auburn family loves Toomer’s Corner.
The push for the campus expansion at UAH comes from several changes in recent years. For one, UAH has seen a dramatic increase in full-time students. Those students are looking for cool places to eat, hang out, shop and more.
UAH contracted with the city to have them clear the property, which is located across from the Bevill Center Residence Hall on Sparkman Drive.
The campus expansion at UAH is still in the early stages of planning. Several options are being considered. All of them would enrich both academic and student life on campus.
Overall, the plans would include a handful of main features. For instance, dining, entertainment, outdoor recreation, a small grocery store, a hotel and a conference center are all on the options table.
Another push will be for a “lively cluster” of student-driven food, beverage and retail shops that would help create a college-town vibe.
Plus, private sector office space could add to more community collaboration and skilled job opportunities for UAH students. More than three acres is also being set aside for parks and open green spaces.
As soon as the plan is formalized, it will go before the Board of Trustees of The University of Alabama System for approval.
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