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State Approves $9 Million Studio Art Building At U.Va.

March 10, 2000 -- University of Virginia officials are delighted that the state budget approved by the General Assembly today includes significant funding for its top building priority.

Nine million dollars in general funds were approved over the next two years to construct a studio art building, the University’s first new arts building in more than 25 years. The art department currently is housed in Fayerweather Hall, a 19th century gymnasium converted to classroom and studio space in the 1930s.

The General Assembly also authorized $400,000 to continue planning for the renovation of the handsome but dilapidated Fayerweather Hall for the art history program. Last October, the University’s Board of Visitors approved design guidelines for its reconstruction.

"We are very pleased that the General Assembly appreciated the urgency of this budget request," said U.Va. Rector John P. Ackerly III. "The arts at the University of Virginia have needed new facilities for many years. We are particularly grateful that the Assembly’s extraordinary support will make possible the cornerstone building for a larger arts complex to be developed over the next several years."

University President John T. Casteen III said private donors are being identified to help fund construction of a new art museum, a larger fine arts library, new classrooms and performance space, and additions to the drama building and the School of Architecture.

As drama department chair Robert Chapel, who heads a University planning commission on the fine and performing arts, told the Board of Visitors last fall, "Buildings, buildings, buildings. Without them, U.Va. doesn’t have a prayer of becoming a major force in the arts world."

"In addition to giving our arts students a modern place to work, we look forward to offering more inviting cultural opportunities to the local community and, indeed, to all of Virginia," said board member and Albemarle County resident William G. Crutchfield, Jr. "This is an important role that the University can play in improving the quality of life for all of us."

Contact: Louise Dudley, (804) 924-1400

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: please contact the Office of University Relations at (804) 924-7116. Television reporters should contact the TV News Office at (804) 924-7550.
SOURCE: U.Va. News Services

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Top news site edited by Jane Ford (jford@virginia.edu); maintained by Karen Asher (kac@virginia.edu); releases posted by Suzanne Raileanu (sr3r@virginia.edu).
Last Modified: Monday, 13-Mar-2000 10:58:56 EST
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