Little Rock-based Garver USA has given the University of Arkansas $250,000 toward the construction of a new Civil Engineering Research Center. The new 25,000-square-foot facility will be located in the Arkansas Technology Park in south Fayetteville.
The University of Arkansas Board of Trustees has approved the issuance of up to $5 million in bonds to match private donations for the project, effectively valuing Garver’s gift at $500,000. The College of Engineering has a goal of raising a total of $5 million in private funds to complete the project.
Kevin Hall, civil engineering department head, said the new facility will be a resource for students and the community. He estimated that over the next 25 years the center will serve more than 9,000 undergraduate students and 1,750 graduate students. He said the center will provide opportunities for hands-on experience through laboratory exercises.
“In addition to that, we expect this facility to generate over $18 million of infrastructure-related research over the next 25 years, providing solutions for local, state and national infrastructure problems,” Hall said.
“We are so excited to partner with Garver in kicking off this important project,” said John English, dean of the College of Engineering. “The creation of safe and robust buildings and structures benefits everyone, and we expect CEREC to open up new opportunities in structural engineering across the state, and to raise the bar when it comes to finding infrastructure solutions. This gift is a big step toward our fundraising goals for this project.”