CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — The University of Illinois College of Fine and Applied Arts is making plans for a major renovation.
The college is seeking approval from the state for its $111 million expansion. The dean of the College of Fine and Applied Arts, Kevin Hamilton, said this project can bring people together.
“The project began in very practical ways, as a way to get a host of different spaces consolidated into one,” Hamilton said. “The disciplines that our School of Art & Design serves across graphic design, painting, sculpture and ceramics are spread out across a whole number of buildings. So the beginning of this project was just to find a way to get them all together.”
The project would reimagine the nearly 70-year-old Art & Design building and add onto the outside. The plan includes more public space, connecting to the Krannert Art Museum and Siebel Center, and creating a common area.
“So the Art & Design building at present will remain, but have a shell wrapped around it and double in size,” Hamilton said. “Then our hope and our plans are to remake what’s called the Link Gallery, that joins the museum in the School of Art & Design to create this new common gathering space and front door to our museum and our School of Art & Design.”
Director of Communications Andy Blacker said the hope is to have all of the college’s art programs under one, hopefully very improved, roof.
“It really drives our recruitment efforts. But it also is the chance to bring all of our art and design work under one roof and to give a more substantial, impactful experience for the students.”
Employees of the college hope to have approval from the state for a majority of the funding by this summer. The rest will come from donors.