FMCC planning capital projects

JOHNSTOWN – Fulton-Montgomery Community College is eyeing a trio of capital projects.

During the recent Board of Trustees meeting, college President Dustin Swanger reviewed three capital projects the college would like to push forward in the coming year. He said the board is looking forward to implementing the projects, each covering a different area of the college.

The first project would add locks on all interior doors, improved lighting in the school’s buildings, signage for easy navigation of the campus, design services for bathrooms and replace aged-out mechanical systems.

“We have talked about this before, the need to have doors in the building that can be quickly locked. Should we have an incident on campus and you want to lock those doors to protect those people inside, there isn’t an easy way to do that,” he said.

Swanger said the current lighting, dating back to the 1960s, was based on mood lighting, as opposed to more modern, bright lighting.

“You don’t do mood lighting anymore,” he said.

This plan requires approval and matching funds from Fulton and Montgomery counties, which would each pay $250,000 each, while the state would cover the remaining $500,000.

Another project is a critical maintenance project for the campus’ wastewater treatment plant. Swanger said much of the treatment system will need to be replaced.

“We need to upgrade and expand that [facility], not just because its 50 years old, nearly,” Swanger said.

With the additional housing and the Global Village the college has planned, more capacity at the treatment plant is needed, he said.

The Global Village – which is estimated to cost about $12 million to develop – is aimed at addressing FMCC’s need for more campus housing. College officials are also looking for the project to spur economic development and meet the social and cultural needs of the college’s student community.

Funding for the college’s share of the more than $1.8 million project would come from the Fulmont College Association and the FM Foundation. The state will also pay half the cost of the project.

Lastly, Swanger discussed student union improvements, including a firewall in the kitchen, bathroom improvements, more student meeting space, preventing water infiltration and moving the college store upstairs. That project has a $2.33 million price tag, and will be paid by Fulmont and state grants for the project.

Both counties, Swanger said, need to approve these projects.

So far, Swanger has spoken with members of the Fulton County Board of Supervisors, but the board has not approved the projects yet.

Swanger said Tuesday he has not spoken with Montgomery County officials yet about these projects.