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Editorial: Ridgewater project took patience to get started, to be completed in 2014

 Ridgewater College held a building breaking event Friday to launch the current $13.9 million remodeling program. Congratulations to the Ridgewater College community for the start of the building project’s final phase.

 The second phase of the project has been a long time coming.

 The project’s funding was first approved by the Minnesota Legislature in 2010, but was then line-item vetoed by then-Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

 In 2011, the project’s funding was included in the bonding list through the Legislature’s regular session, but was dropped from the list during negotiations to end the 2011 Minnesota budget shutdown.

 The first phase of the project was completed several years ago, which included demolishing several obsolete buildings and developing a new facility for customized training and some technical programs.

 The current project is two-part:

 Expansion and improvement of facilities for the agriculture and veterinary technician program.

 Remodeling of administrative and student services facilities to create a more organized layout and a newly designed main entrance.

 Work on Building C’s ag and vet areas is expected to be completed in September. The programs will gain additional space, including a larger shop which will accommodate modern farm equipment. This will be especially beneficial to the ag-related programs, which are continuing to grow.

 Work on Building A will be completed in 2014, which includes remodeling counseling services and student services offices, such as admissions and financial aid. When Building A remodeling is completed, Building H will be demolished.

 So the final project’s remodeling has started. Congratulations to the Ridgewater College community and its leadership team for their continued efforts to get the necessary funding approval.