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Published: Sunday, 8/31/2014 - Updated: 3 months ago

Lourdes seeks public donations for its mid-campus development

BY NATALIE TRUSSO CAFARELLO
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Lourdes University is asking for the public‘s help to pay for its redevelopment of its mid-campus, and it has an anonymous donor will to double the public‘s contributions‍.

The university recently sent thousands of letters to each Sylvania and Sylvania Township household seeking donations. 

It said, in part, it‘s mid-campus will “create a park-like setting the residents of Sylvania will feel welcome to stroll along the path, sit in the shade with a good book or a good friend, or just simply enjoy the scenery and the lively chatter of young voices as they make their way to and from class.”

Mary Arquette, Lourdes vice president for institutional advancement, said one donor, who asked to remain anonymous, liked the idea of the university opening the mid-campus to the community and “wanted to issue a challenge to Sylvania residents.” He will match each donation toward mid-campus up to $1,000 per contributing family and up to $200,000 in total.

So far, the university has raised about $4,000, she said. Some donations are as little as $15. The public campaign will continue through the end of the year.

The mid-campus is an 11-acre swath that stretches from Brint Road to the main campus on Convent Boulevard. It connects the main campus to Lourdes student housing, an apartment complex off of Brint at McCord Road. The mid-campus is being developed in phases.

Its initial phase was to remove houses that were on the land and to scrape the land and it into a park-like setting with recreational grounds and an athletic building. Part of phase one, with an estimated cost of $2 million, was to install a walkway. The walkway has been installed, but to come are benches and some landscaping. The first phase is nearly complete.

Mrs. Arquette said soccer and Lacrosse practice fields will be installed by fall 2015.

The university is still in the midst of a capital campaign, which covers much of the mid-campus work plus scholarships, endowed chairs, and a now-completed new dining hall on the main campus. Between January, 2011 and June 30, 2015, Lourdes plans to raise $10 million. The fund-raising is about $1 million shy of the goal.

Mrs. Arquette said the recreation complex on the mid-campus is slated for phase 2 of the development. It is still being designed but is expected to cost $4 million to $5 million. the university is “in the process of completing funding for phase two,” she said.

Lourdes has said the overall mid-campus project could take years and cost at least $12 million.

Contact Natalie Trusso Cafarello at: 419-206-0356, or ntrusso@theblade.com, or on Twitter @natalietrusso. 



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