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$44.6-Million Expansion Clears Hurdle : Major CSUN Projects Near Final OK

Times Staff Writer

Cal State Northridge has won preliminary approval for $44.6 million in construction projects, including a new business and education complex, a second student union for resident students and expansion of the school’s existing student union.

The California State University Board of Trustees voted Wednesday to approve about $900,000 for detailed construction plans for the Northridge improvements. The board a year ago approved funding for architectural plans.

Funding for construction of the projects is expected to be considered by the board within the next year, said Elliot Mininberg, vice president for administration and university advancement.

“We have overcome a second hurdle,” he said.

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Mininberg said he does not expect the board to deny construction funds for the projects after having spent more than $1 million so far.

The school’s $28.2-million business administration, economics and education complex is expected to be paid for with state taxes, said Janice Walker, California State University spokeswoman. The 184,425-square-foot complex, scheduled for completion in November, 1991, will consist of four connected buildings surrounding a courtyard, she said.

Fees Fund Student Unions

Student fees will pay for the $16.4-million student union projects, Walker said. About $12 million of that money will fund expansion of the present student union, including the addition of a small theater, offices and meeting rooms.

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A second student union will be built at the north end of the campus to serve residential students, Walker said. Both student union projects are expected to be completed in 1990, she said.

The new buildings will not mean higher enrollment at the school, which has more than 30,000 students, university officials said.

“We are controlling admissions because we don’t have the resources to handle all the demand,” said Fred Dukes, administrative program specialist for the School of Business Administration and Economics, the largest department at Northridge with more than 6,000 students.

The addition of 31 classrooms in the new business school building will accommodate only the students now enrolled in the department, Dukes said. But the department’s move from the Sierra South building will create more space for other departments and help ease the overcrowded conditions on the campus, he said.

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Carolyn Ellner, dean of the School of Education, said department faculty members use former dormitory rooms for office space and for some classes.


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