The main campus located in Centralia, Illinois was created in the late 1960s and had only seen minor improvements prior to the start of the 21st Century. In order to meet the needs of its students and the Centralia community, the College knew it must create a master plan of new facilities and campus amenities.
The existing campus in 2005 included temporary buildings and many acres of green space on each end of the main cross axis. This East-West axis became the defining element of the master plan for the enhanced campus. On the West, the green space was a buffer between the North-South access road and the main campus facilities. Student housing was planned just west of the access road. In order to draw people in from the access road, an Entry Sign, complete with electronic message center, was the first master plan element implemented. Later, an East-West Entry Walkway was constructed in the Fall of 2009 connecting the student housing to the facilities on the East. Also on the East, the temporary buildings in disrepair were demolished to make room for new elements. On the East end of the axis, a Clock Tower was designed in tandem with a new Lifelong Learning Center. The design for the 17,900 sf center and 50 ft. clock tower were completed in the Summer of 2007. Construction was completed in the Winter of 2008. Both elements reflected an enhanced design aesthetic and became defining elements of campus.
The continued growth on main campus since 2008 allowed the College to implement its master plan even further. Outdoor athletic facilities were created south of the East-West axis. A collegiate Soccer Field and stands were established in August of 2009. A six-court collegiate Tennis Court Facility was created in October of 2009. Several renovations of existing facilities have occurred to date. Designed as an addition to the existing gymnasium, the Fitness and Recreation Center provides ample recreation opportunities for staff and students. The 13,600 sf facility was completed in the Spring of 2010. Just east of this facility, an 8,000 sf indoor practice facility was constructed. Complete in the Winter of 2010, the Sports & Activities Facility provides practice space for many sports year round.
The southern part of main campus is home to a beautiful forested area. In order to better utilize this natural area and to provide additional recreation space, the College created a fitness trail which was completed in the Fall of 2011. At the south end of the main parking lot, a fitting tribute to the fallen soldiers of our country was created. Working with the local Veterans Tribute Committee, the College helped see that Phase I of the Veterans Tribute project was completed in 2013.
Most recently, a state-of-the-art Nursing Facility was created north of the main East-West axis. This became the first facility to utilize this space on campus. The 16,600 sf facility houses multiple classrooms, skills labs, offices, and a paramedicine lab and was completed in the Summer of 2015. In correlation with the Nursing Facility design, the master plan was updated for this NW quadrant to include provision for three more facilities in the future. Thus, the College’s master plan will allow for it to meet the needs of its students and the surrounding community for years to come.