The Farmville Area Chamber enjoyed learning about all that Longwood has planned when Louise Waller, VP of Administration and Finance spoke on May, 13th at the monthly Chamber membership lunch. Longwood University has 6 projects that are completed, or are currently under construction, with another 3 in the design phase of their Master Plan. Ms. Waller exuded excitement about the partnership that Longwood has with the community and how they are working hard to make their buildings beautiful and accessible to all.
The completed Brock Hall and Upchurch University Center are huge achievements that were completed in 2018. A large statue of Joan of Arc, the university’s patron saint, was erected that is now referred to as “Joanie on her ownie”. This is an art installation that should reside for generations to come and they are exceedingly proud of this.
Waller talked about the current work taking place at the Curry and Frazer Residence Halls. She explained that they are undergoing renovations; however, they retained all the steel and concrete which was a more economical way to proceed than a complete tear-down. The architects also pointed out that these large buildings did not face Main Street so entrances were added to make these more a part of the community. Plus, Waller pointed out, “This made it easier for pizza deliveries!”
There are 2 buildings currently under construction that are nearing construction. The admissions building, which is on High Street, should be ready to welcome prospective new students in the fall of 2019 and a new academic building behind French Hall should be completed by 2020.
Longwood also has many projects that are in the design stage. This university has a wonderful music program but they have outgrown their current building. The new building has been approved by the General Assembly and will have state-of-the-art teaching and performance spaces, a 500 seat concert hall will also support academic, student, and community events. Designs have also started on a brand new Facilities Building to be built out at the old lumber yard.
The most thrilling news was Longwood’s largest ever donation from Joan Perry Brock. This donation will allow Longwood to construct a beautiful arena with features for many types of activities. They hope this venue will be utilized for sports, community and regional events. The target opening for the Joan Perry Brock Center is 2022.
Longwood also conducted a study to develop a vision and plan for improving their academic spaces and make sure they are moving forward with the way people will educate and learn in the coming years. Classrooms will need to be modified and different equipment will need to be used as technology changes.
Executive Director Joy Stump shared upcoming events for the Chamber and welcomed new members. The next Chamber lunch will be June 10th at the Community Center at The Woodland at 11:45 am.