MCC makes progress on road access

The Moorehead/Dickinson road access to South Haynes Avenue is slowly moving forward with the hopes of the road being open by spring 2017.

According to MCC President Stacy Klippenstein he attended numerous meetings regarding the road extension and was recently informed that First Interstate Bank has everything ready to go.

First Interstate Bank is hoping to begin the project this summer with the road being completed in the fall. However, the road will not be opened until the bank is fully constructed.

“This will be good for students to get to Haynes safer,” said Klippenstein. “They currently cut across the field or through the Albertsons parking lot.”

The road, which would run from MCC across the Fretland property and connect with South Haynes Avenue, is a joint project of MCC and First Interstate Bank, which is building a new full-service location fronting the college on the property. 

MCC and First Interstate Bank are also working together on signage for Haynes and when you enter the college campus.

According to Klippenstein the college is looking into working on the cross-walk on Dickinson as there will be more pedestrians once the road is constructed. 

Because of the current timeline the college is unsure whether the heavy equipment students will be able to help with the road work. There is still a small possibility they could lend a hand towards the end of the project.

According to Klippenstein they are not sure on the final cost at this point. 

There is a proposed sidewalk, cross-walk and a possible four-way stop. The street will be a no-parking street. It will also be fully lighted with street lamps. The road will be built to city specifications. 

The south edge of the Fretland property from Haynes to Dickinson was donated to the school by Roger Lothspeich in December 2012.

Announced last Wednesday afternoon MCC ordered the building for the Ag Advancement Center, which will house the agriculture and equine programs. 

With the cost of metal going up, MCC felt like now was the time to do it (before the cost goes any higher).

The building cost roughly $521,000. 

MCC will know the final cost in July with the delivery set for August 15.

This project began in February 2014 and has recently passed the $2 million mark in donations for the construction. The college has $1.2 million cash in hand with a little over a million in pledges. 

On June 6, MCC with Endowment Board members, Stevenson Design and Jackson Contractor Group met to finalize details and drawings of the center. The bid process is now open until June 30. Once the bid process closes a meeting will be held to review the bids with Jackson Contractor Group. They will provide the final cost on July 6.

According to Klippenstein, the building will be snow white and harbor blue in color with a logo on one side.

The center will include classrooms, faculty offices, a foyer area, seating for around 500 people and a multipurpose space to be used by the college and community. 

The possibility of having the heavy equipment students help with the project was briefly discussed. The possibility is being looked into. 

The board approved the purchase of a 2013 Chevrolet Suburban with four-wheel drive for $36,320. This vehicle would replace the 2001 Dodge Ram Van they currently have. The replacement of the van was scheduled for the 2016 fiscal year. 

The money would come from the general fund.

The Suburban comes with new tires and only 56,000 miles.

The vehicle would be used to transport college staff, faculty and students who often attend meetings and events in small groups. 

An example given was when eight resident assistants (RAs) travel to Billings for training every fall. Along with MCC athletic teams like golf who often need an oversized vehicle to transport the team and equipment. Without a vehicle big enough some employees use personal vehicles or borrow vehicles from family members which is a liability issue.

Having a vehicle that is four-wheel drive would also add an additional safety feature when traveling in the winter. 

The Suburban would be added to the MCC motor pool. 

After two weeks of searching the board found several candidates for the open trustee position.

A sub-committee met with all three candidates for an interview. 

After the interviews and consideration the committee decided to offer Ryan Jones for approval by the board.

Jones attended a community college, been involved with the MCC ag program and has been involved in several leadership roles.

The board approved and swore Jones in at the meeting last night.

The next meeting will be July 25 at 5:30 p.m.