Lingle releases $18.8M for UH-Hilo buildings
A student center and Hawaiian-language programs benefit
HILO » Gov. Linda Lingle said yesterday that she has released more than $18 million for a student fitness center and Hawaiian-language studies building at the University of Hawaii at Hilo.
The bulk of the money, about $16.3 million, will go for the Student Life Center, which will include a fitness center, basketball court and Olympic-sized swimming pool.
The estimated cost of the Student Life Center project is about $20.9 million. Money previously was released for planning and design, so yesterday's release should be enough to complete the project, said university Capital Improvement Projects Director Jan Yokota.
Construction is expected to begin early next year.
Lingle made her announcement yesterday during a visit to the campus.
She said the Student Life Center will help UH-Hilo attract and retain students and help contribute to the overall development of Hilo as a "college town."
Lingle also released $2 million for planning and design of the Hawaiian Language Building. Design work is expected to be completed by mid-2007. The project will cost $21.8 million in total.
The College of Hawaiian Language at UH-Hilo is currently dispersed throughout several buildings.
Besides university projects, Lingle also released $347,000 for two ongoing programs run by the Hawaii County Economic Opportunity Council.
The Language Arts Multicultural program, which serves 560 elementary school children, will receive $185,000, and the Dropout Prevention Program, which aids 100 high school students, will get $162,000.