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Construction Underway on Del Mar Southside Corpus Christi

Construction on the new Del Mar College in Corpus Christi’s Southside is now underway. The $139 million facility is due to be complete in 2022. Courtesy photo

Construction of the new Del Mar College campus in Corpus Christi's Southside got underway December 2 with much fanfare and food. Current students celebrated the coming of the school’s third campus — and its first new one in 60 years— by showcasing the accomplishments of Del Mar culinary, architecture, and biotechnology classes. The CCISD’s Veterans Memorial High School band and dance teams were on hand, as was the Vikings mascot.

“This truly is an exciting day,” said Del Mar CEO Mark Escamilla. “Although work has already started on the development of these ninety-six acres, the clock starts now, running on what will be a beautiful, gleaming campus.”

The 249,500-square-foot facilities will be home to “Centers of Excellence” in architecture and drafting technology, bio-science, and hospitality and culinary arts, all of which were on display at the event. Culinary students made hors d’oeuvres and fruit-filled cakes, while architectural students displayed handbuilt models and biotechnology students showcased research posters on antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

Scheduled to open its doors in 2022, the campus at the intersection of Yorktown Boulevard and Rodd Field Road will also provide core courses for transfer students, dual credit, developmental education, workforce, and continuing education programs. Funding for the $139 million project was approved by voters in a 2016 bond election. The Del Mar College Board of Directors pointed to a need for a facility on the Southside.

“Today, more than forty-one percent of our Del Mar students live in Southside ZIP codes, so we know that we have got the need today and growing need in the future,” said board Chair Carol Scott, “All one has to do is look around to know that this area is booming.”

Work is underway on infrastructure and the Central Plant, which is Project 1. Project 2 will be construction of the classroom facilities. Final design, budget, and contractor were approved in October.

The Southside Campus Project will include:

  • Central Plant (8,631 square feet) as part of physical facilities operations;
  • Hospitality and Culinary Institute (59,561 square feet) housing ultramodern teaching spaces, including kitchen labs, a coffee shop, and a public-accessible restaurant/dining facility to provide students with hands-on, real-world learning experiences;
  • Main Building (80,437 square feet) housing the library, student services, community meeting spaces, and a coffee shop;
  • STEM Building (100,915 square feet) housing the Architecture/Drafting Technology program and biology, biotechnology and biomanufacturing programs with contemporary teaching spaces, laboratories, and equipment along with other STEM-related programs, including engineering.

Enrollment is expected to be at 3,400 students in the first year. The campus is being built on what is called the “educational corridor.” It will be only 15 minutes away from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi and 30 minutes from Texas A&M University-Kingsville.

“Our vision and planning did not just address the near future,” Escamilla said. “The new campus takes into account what the Corpus Christi and neighboring communities may need a hundred or more years from now.”

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