House Capital Investment Committee Tours BSU Campus For Proposed Bonding Project
After 47 years, the building known as Hagg-Sauer Hall at Bemidji State University may be no more.
Faculty, staff, state representatives and the House Capital Investment Committee took a tour to learn more about a proposed bonding project that could replace the building.
“Hagg-Sauer just did not fit into the bonding, into the budget this past round,” said Rep. Matt Grossell (R), District 2-A. “For that reason, now it’s at the top of to-do list.”
The demolition and new construction of the outdated facility would also erase $9.3 million in deferred maintenance such as water damage in the basement. There’s momentum in the legislature behind the project.
“Well, I’m on the bonding committee and talking directly with the chair and so we’ll keep things moving the best we can,” said Grossell.
Ten state-of-the-art teaching spaces and an auditorium to seat 320 students are some of the proposed additions. The project would also signify campus wide improvements.
“This will allow us to build classrooms that are on one level, that’ll have ADA accessibility and all of the students will be able to have the same access to the faculty member in a really active learning environment,” said Bemidji State University President Dr. Faith Hensrud.
The tour allows the committee to see the building firsthand and understand the needs for it. A facelift for Hagg-Sauer could enhance campus life at BSU.
“If we can make it a more modern building, downsize it a little bit, it’ll help the school as a whole save some money and they can roll that into the student,” said Rep. Matt Bliss (R), District 5-A.
BSU is seeking $22.5 million to finish the design and complete the construction.