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The Blue & Gray Press | September 26, 2017

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Master Plan Gives Campus a Facelift

Hurley’s new Master Plan will redesign the face of Mary Washington’s campus.

The Master Plan, which focuses on the physical features of campus, calls for residence hall renovations, a new performing arts center and a new dining hall and student center. It was presented to the Board of Visitors in July and will be presented for student and employee input this fall.

A performing arts center is one of the biggest changes that have been introduced by the Master Plan. In order to build it, Hurley said Marshall Hall would be demolished, but said Russell Hall would remain intact.

This is different from what Hurley said in his speech to faculty and staff in August.

“I said that Russell would be demolished, but it [won’t] be,” Hurley said last week, clarifying his remarks by saying that only Marshall would be demolished.

He said that additional dorms are set to be demolished as well.
“We would also demolish South, Framar, and Jefferson, and on that hill, we could build a residence hall that would be compatible with Bushnell and Combs,” Hurley said.

The new residence hall would fit into the area of campus between those residence halls, and would account for the lost beds.

“We could build it on a hillside so it [wouldn’t] look like a huge building,” he said.

Hurley hopes that the new residence hall will be four or five stories, but will be built into the hill, so that it will still blend in with the rest of campus.

The performing arts center itself will house the Department of Theatre and Dance and the Department of Music while also providing the associated facilities they need, according to Hurley.

“My vision of it is a 400-seat performance center in addition to the associated support and academic spaces,” he said.

Hurley’s Master Plan also focuses on adding more parking on campus.

“We hired a company as part of this master plan process that specializes in parking,” he said. “[They found that] the parking lots on the periphery of the campus are underutilized, and all the parking lots in the middle part of campus are totally full.”

Hurley said that in order to maintain the park-like setting of UMW’s campus, he has recommended that an additional parking deck should go around the heating plant across from DuPont Hall.

Photo courtesy of Hunter Smith

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