Construction begins on new Fresno State student union building

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The sound of construction fills the air at Fresno State.

Just off campus, a new senior housing development is in the works near Chestnut.

But all eyes are on one patch of dirt, where crews are putting up the new student union building.

Construction finally kicked off for the new student union just a couple of weeks ago.

Back in 2018, students voted to increase tuition fees by $149 a semester to help fund the $60,000,000 project.

A previous proposal to build a new student union was voted down, and the decision is still contentious among the student body.

While some students were still outraged, those higher tuition fees will help fund the building, but it isn't coming out of students' pockets yet.

Lisa Boyles, the spokesperson for Fresno State, says the school is not pulling from student funds just yet. "The student portion won't kick in till the building goes into use."

And as for the old student union, it's staying put and will still serve as a gathering place for students. "The student population has outgrown the capacity. That's why we need a bigger, more modern facility to help meet our current body population, which is almost 25,000."

The new student union will be a focal point for the campus and serve as a new place for students to hang out.

"It will have a grand ballroom. It will have dining options. There will be outdoor spaces that will be incorporated," says Boyles.

Construction is expected to be complete by the fall of 2021.
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