Construction on higher education center begins

Groundbreaking held for EWCHEC

Barely a year after voters approved a 5 cent branch maintenance tax to help fund the East Williamson County Higher Education Center, city and college officials gathered May 22 to break ground on the first phase of the Hutto campus.

Brian Pollard, director of facilities planning and construction with Texas State Technical College, said work has started on the roads and parking lot on the 57-acre campus near Toll 130 and CR 108.

The first building, slated to be finished by fall 2013, will be 112,000 square feet in size and three stories tall. The $17 million project also includes a parking lot with more than 600 spaces.

TSTC and Temple College will share the space, with TSTC offering certificate programs and Temple College offering traditional academic courses.

The first floor of the building will include a bookstore and library, classroom space and lab areas for programs such as plumbing and welding. Classrooms and staff offices will occupy the majority of the second floor of the building, and the culinary arts program and more lab space will fill the third floor.

This fall classes will be at EWCHEC's temporary location at Veterans Hill Elementary, 555 Limmer Loop in Round Rock.

TSTC offers certificate programs in air conditioning technician, combination welding (offered in Taylor), electrical construction, culinary arts, industrial systems mechanic and radio communication electronics. Registration is open until Aug. 17, and classes start Aug. 27.

Online registration began for Temple College classes June 25, and regular registration will start July 23 and run through Aug. 15.


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