Lutherans in the Twin Cities

Augsburg College breaks ground for new Gateway Center

Augsburg College didn’t wait for the inauguration of new president Paul Pribbenow (planned for October 20) to move ahead with a long-awaited “Gateway Building.” Already in late July a mountain of excavated earth covered a former parking lot next to the ELCA school’s Lindell Library, as construction got underway.

The $18.5 million facility will be named for Donald and Beverly Oren, major donors to the project. He is chairman of the board of Dart Transit Company.

The new center, named for its strategic location at the front door of the campus, will provide student housing on its upper three floors. The ground floor will house an alumni conference center; the StepUP program, which works with addicted students; the school’s MBA program; the Gage Family Art Gallery, currently housed next door in Lindell Library; and offices for institutional advancement. Retail space will also be included on the ground level, possibly including a Barnes and Noble bookstore outlet with its trademark coffee shop.

Planning for the Gateway Building was done in conjunction with the Riverside Corridor Project development. It brings together the collaborative efforts of Augsburg, the Cedar-Riverside Business Association, the West Bank Community Development Corporation and the University of Minnesota.

The construction cranes are currently busy on both sides of the campus. A new south side addition to the Melby Hall athletic complex is also underway.