Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Marymount University Digs Itself a New Hole


With its’ 60th anniversary just around the corner, Arlington’s Marymount University looks to be buying itself a $25 million present a few years early.

Next month will see Dewberry Development break ground on two "contemporary neo-classical buildings" that will take the place of a Marymount parking lot bounded by Old Dominion Drive, Yorktown Boulevard and 26th Street North. Plans for the Davis Carter Scott-designed sibling structures, a dormitory and academic building respectively, were initially approved by Arlington County Board of Supervisors in July 2007.

Rose Bente' Lee Ostapenko Hall (good luck to the co-eds stammering over that one after a few jell-o shots), the 6-story, 75,000 square foot dormitory going up on the site, was named for – you guessed it -Rose Bente' Lee Ostapenko, the University’s current Secretary to the Board of Trustees and founder of the Rose Bente' Lee Endowed Scholarship Fund. Ms. Ostapenko also lent funds (and, surprise surprise, her name) to Marymount’s student center in 1999.

That 239-bed facility will be erected concurrently with Caruthers Hall, a 4-story, 52,000 square foot academic building. The new building will house classrooms, lecture halls, faculty offices, and lab space for health science, chemistry, physics and biology. The facility is being named in honor of Preston C. Caruthers, chairman of Arlington real estate firm, Carfam II Associates LP, and longtime Marymount supporter.

The 2 new structures will both sit atop an underground, 4-story, 145,000 square foot parking garage that will contain 370 new spaces. A new plaza will straddle the gap between the academic building and dormitory, while an overhead pedestrian footpath will be erected across Yorktown Road and connect the facilities with Marymount proper.

“This initiative responds directly to Marymount’s most critical needs,” said university president Dr. James E. Bundschuh. “The new facilities will help us meet the increasing demand for campus housing, significantly enhance instruction in key academic programs, and address the parking challenges that we have faced for several years.”

The 4 Arlington communities bordering the Marymount campus - Old Dominion, Donaldson Run, Yorktown and Rock Spring – have already lent their approval to the project. Davis Construction and Harkins Builders Inc. will be going to ground on the site starting next month. Further BIDs are due by September 25th. The project is slated for completion in time for the start of the 2010 academic year.

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