HCC plans $40 million project in North Forest – New building to train workforce, academics; rebuild community

EXTERIOR VIEW looking from Homestead Road shows the main entrance of the new building

NORTH FOREST – Officials from the Houston Community College system held a Town Hall meeting with the North Forest community last Wednesday evening. The reason for the event, held in the previous public board room of the NFISD, was to show the community the plans for the new buildings on the NCC-NE North Forest campus, and to explain the programs that will take place in this facility and benefit the community as a whole.

Using funds from the HCC bond program approved by county-wide voters, HCC will build a new building of 92,750 square feet on a 43 acre campus at the corner of Homestead and Little York. The total program cost is about $40 million dollars, presenters Dr. Margaret Fisher and Dr. Cesar Maldonado said. This represents not only a commitment to HCC educational goals, but a very important commitment to the North Forest community, one that could turn around the economic base and social and crime statistics of the area.

Features of the design as shown on drawings, include a suite of rooms for workforce training, and automotive technology. There will also be academic classroom space, offices for administration and faculty, a library, student life center, and a conference center.

Dave Wilson, HCC board member for District II, spoke about what advantage this could bring to the North Forest community. Specifically, he said it would be a sparkplug to revitalize this community, and help to get businesses opening up. He envisions that working families will want to have their children come to this school, and said “It will be great for everybody.”

Also presenting at the town hall were project manager Marvin Daniels of Jacobs, and architects David Andrews and Jeanette DiCorcia of PGAL. Andrews presented a number of drawings of the design, and also spoke about the time it would take to build and then open. It is anticipated that construction will start by the end of 2014, and first classes will be in 2016.