Southeast Missouri State University to accept bids for first phase of new multiuse complex

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KBSI) – Southeast Missouri State University will begin to accept bids for the first phase of a new multiuse complex at Southeast Missouri State University that will include a football and soccer facility as well as academic and laboratory spaces.

The bid process begins Sunday, July 17.

The project received $11 million from the State of Missouri approved by Governor Mike Parson in June for the comprehensive project development including, among other things, demolition, site preparation and planning, design, and construction.

“An economic impact study completed this past fall by an international labor market analytics firm (EMSI) found that for every dollar Missouri taxpayers invested in the University, their return on that investment was over $2. In addition, the study found the multiuse complex would add $31 million to the economy including the construction spending impact as well as the long-term visitor spending impact which is projected to increase by nearly a quarter million dollars per year,” said Dr. Carlos Vargas, president of Southeast.

Phase One includes requests for bids that will include only phase one of the multiphase project–the rebuild of the south grandstand, fan facilities, including restrooms and concession areas, and associated HVAC, mechanical and other systems work.

The south grandstand was demolished last year following a structural assessment. The university and the Southeast Missouri University Foundation identified approximately $12 million for replacement. Bids were previously received for phase one in January but significantly exceeded the cost estimate, Southeast and its architectural firm spent the last few months redesigning the initial phase to control costs without sacrificing quality.

Director of Athletics Brady Barke says the redesign has been able to focus more on the fan experience. Barke says a separate project to replace the turf was scheduled for this year following the season and can now also be combined in the project timeline. Construction is expected to begin this fall and will continue through next summer with the initial phase planned to be complete in time for the fall 2023 season.

The complete project enabled the university to consider how its academic areas already worked with athletics as well as address needed improvement to several facilities and laboratories in the health sciences.

The Houck project is more than just a stadium. It will be a multiuse complex that includes a facility with classrooms, labs, and offices to support STEM, health, life, and allied health sciences research, and academic programs. Potential laboratories incorporated into the new facility may include an allied health laboratory, a biology (physiology) lab, a virtual anatomy laboratory, and a life science (biomechanics) laboratory.

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