University of Illinois President Timothy Killeen was joined by UIS Chancellor Susan Koch, and Springfield Mayor Jim Langfelder for the groundbreaking ceremony.
“Today marks a historic moment in the life of the Springfield campus,” said Koch. “This groundbreaking today is the culmination of years of planning, imagining, negotiating, campaigning, fundraising and I will admit, no small measure of strategic whining and complaining on the part of the Chancellor.”
The two-story, 50,000-square-foot student union will anchor the campus’s south quad, providing campus dining services, a coffee shop, a ballroom with seating for up to 450 people and a Student Leadership Center that will house student government, volunteer offices and workspaces for student organizations. The facility is scheduled to open in January 2018.
"I'm deeply grateful to all of you for your generosity and support and to Susan and her team for their hard work and persistence to make this dream a reality," said Killeen.