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Midland University is set to host an open house informational meeting regarding its recently announced plan to build a new residence hall to replace Men’s Memorial Hall.

The informational session will be held at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 13 in the Anderson Conference Center located within Anderson Hall on the university’s campus.

According to information released by Midland, the university will be sharing additional details about the Miller Residence Hall project as well as taking questions from the public.

In November, Midland announced plans for the construction of the new Miller Residence Hall to replace Men’s Memorial Hall as part of a phased campus investment to create comfortable, contemporary spaces for students.

The roughly $10 million project is expected to begin construction in early spring of 2019 and is expected to be completed by 2020. The new 98-bed facility will house sophomores, with the current class of high school seniors expected to be the first to call the new residence hall home.

The project was spurred on in part by student feedback, said Merritt Nelson, vice president of enrollment management and marketing. The Men’s Memorial Hall was built in 1947 and its “shelf life was getting close to the end” — something Nelson said the administration was aware of and was echoed in student surveys.

“For the last several years, we started to hear from our students that it was time to start looking at replacing Men’s Hall,” Nelson said in November. “Trends have changed in higher ed residential living, and we need to stay with those trends and even be ahead of those trends a little bit.”

The new building will be located directly on the footprint of Men’s Memorial Hall, aims to update the quality of housing on campus, not the quantity.

There is enough capacity on campus, Nelson said, and so the new residence hall will have roughly the same capacity as the current building.

The hall will be a sophomore, co-ed residence and will emphasize “social engagement to help students build relationships and make connections that foster their academic success,” according to a press release from the university. It will feature suite-style living with a majority of students having a private bedroom and shared bathroom, kitchen and living room, depending on the floor plan.

It will include several ADA compliant suites, as well as student lounges, study rooms and laundry facilities on each floor. The main floor will include kitchen facilities, a fireplace, an outdoor patio, meeting spaces and a residence hall director suite and office.

The project’s cost is being funded through fundraising, Nelson said, with the lead gift coming from the future residence hall’s namesake donors — James W. Miller and Donna Miller.

Those with questions or comments about the Miller Hall project are encouraged to email Midland at millerhallproject@midlandu.edu.

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