The University of Richmond campus is about to get a welcome addition.
Site work has started on a 54,000-square-foot building that will serve as a student welcome center and house the university’s offices of admissions, financial aid, employer development, registrar and bursar.
Called the Queally Center for Admission and Career Services, the building is a result of a recent fundraising campaign that included a $10 million gift from alumni Paul and Anne-Marie Queally.
Construction on the welcome center is currently underway on a site beside the intersection of UR Drive and Westhampton Way. The project, valued at $26.5 million, is scheduled to be completed in summer 2016.
UR spokeswoman Sunni Brown said the building will serve as a starting place for students and their families. A new access from River Road will be designed as a main entrance to the campus and establish the building as UR’s “front door.”
“Housing these offices together is beneficial,” Brown said. “This building will be the point of interaction as students start their journey with Richmond and continue a lifelong relationship as alumni.”
Hourigan Construction is the general contractor on the project. SMBW is the architect for the three-story building, which will also include a banquet hall.
The building is part of UR’s 2011 Campus Master Plan. The center is considered a key component of its “Fulfilling the Promise” fundraising campaign, which was launched in 2013 and raised $162 million from more than 25,000 donors.
The campaign was tied to UR’s strategic plan, called “The Richmond Promise,” which was recently completed and timed to coincide with the departure of Edward Ayers as university president. Ayers, who will remain at UR in a faculty role, will be replaced by Ronald Crutcher, who starts July 1.
The welcome center will be the second on campus to bear the Queally name. The couple also bolstered construction of Queally Hall, a 33,000-square-foot addition to the Robins School of Business.