The Cornerstone II building has been chosen as the site for Stark State College’s new Downtown Canton Satellite Center and Energy Institute.
The Cornerstone II Building has been selected as the site for Stark State College’s new Satellite Center and Energy Institute. The board of trustees approved the $4.9 million purchase at its meeting Wednesday night.
Cornerstone’s location at 400 Third St. SE in downtown Canton was a prime selling point, according to Stark State President Para M. Jones.
The building will serve as a regional training hub for workers in the oil and gas industry.
“We’re so excited. It’s a beautiful building, an excellent choice,” said spokeswoman Irene Motts. “It’s central, so convenient for our students. We hope, like the name says, it will become a cornerstone for Canton.”
Funding for the purchase comes from a $10 million capital appropriation from the state. The remaining $5.1 million will be used for renovations and improvements, as well as equipment purchases.
“The board of trustees carefully evaluated numerous downtown locations, taking into consideration the needs of our students and academic programs, room for possible future growth, interstate access and the impact of our satellite center on downtown revitalization,” said Jones in a release. “Cornerstone II meets all these criteria, and the location provides excellent access from US 30, SR 43 and I-77 for our current and future oil and gas partners.”
Cornerstone II houses the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation and Chesapeake Energy. College officials say they will work with the BWC to help it relocate. Chesapeake will move its Utica shale headquarters in 2014 to the Beck Industrial Commerce Center in Louisville.
Motts said the design and construction bid process will begin in the fall, and the college hopes to start offering classes by late 2014 or early 2015.