REDMOND, OR -- Central Oregon Community College continues to grow and its Redmond campus is running out of space, "The Redmond campus serves more than 2,000 local residents every year. Some of those are in programs only offered in Redmond, such as veterinary technician and manufacturing. But others are taking writing, math and all the courses needed in order to be able to transfer to a four-year university," says COCC's Ron Paradis. He tells KBND News, the four buildings in Redmond are not enough, "We believe that with the growth in Redmond and in other areas to the north, in the future, we will need even more space to accommodate everybody and their educational needs."
The 2019 Legislature earmarked more than $8 million, as part of an overall Capital Construction Package, for a new general purpose classroom building at COCC-Redmond. "We're estimating the building will cost somewhere in excess of $20 million," says Paradis, "So now, our next job is to find out how we're going to raise that other money, and that will take place over the next few years." He says that could come through private donations and/or a bond, "This is not a building that we expect to be under construction in the near future." Governor Kate Brown has yet to sign the bill, but Paradis says she has always been supportive of COCC.
During the recession, Paradis says the college's enrollment doubled in just four years, and they're still working to accommodate that rapid growth, "We have not done the formal planning for the building, but we're looking at about a 30,000 sq ft building that would be academic in nature, meaning that it would include science labs and computer labs and other classrooms, so that we can offer even more courses there on the Redmond campus."