MURPHYSBURO – July 19, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today toured the future site of the $43.5 million Southern Illinois University (SIU) Transportation Education Center. The project will create approximately 350 area jobs and is funded through Illinois Jobs Now!, a $31 billion capital plan that will revive the state’s ailing economy by creating and retaining over 439,000 jobs over the next six years.
“Not only will this project help keep SIU competitive in the automotive and aviation technology fields, but it will create 350 good-paying jobs right here in Southern Illinois,” said Governor Quinn.
The 271,800-square-foot facility will house SIU's nationally-recognized aviation and automotive schools, including classrooms, library and reference rooms, laboratories, student lounges and a computer center.
“Southern Illinois University applauds the Governor and the legislature for their bi-partisan effort to enact the first comprehensive state capital bill in nearly a decade,” said SIU President Glenn Poshard. “The result of their good work means our university will now be home to a Transportation Education Center that will provide our students with the state-of-the-art facilities they need to deliver the applied research, training and high-quality degrees that the transportation industry demands.”
The project also includes a hangar capable of accommodating a 757 passenger jet, storage for aircraft and automobiles, and an engine testing facility. The project is designed to be certified Silver by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).
The SIU Automotive Technology program has been housed in temporary facilities on the Carterville campus for many years, and the aviation technologies and flight programs have outgrown their facility and are operating in multiple locations. The new Transportation Education Center will keep these vital, job-training programs competitive in the future.
The state’s Capital Development Board, which manages all non-road, state-funded construction projects, is overseeing the project. It is scheduled for completion in June 2012.