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updated: 6/23/2014 4:14 PM

Summer means construction at U of I

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Associated Press

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Construction projects are in high gear at the University of Illinois campus in Champaign-Urbana now that the school year is over and fewer people are on campus.

At least five major projects are going on now or will start soon, The News-Gazette reported.

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The $165 million, multiphase renovation of the State Farm Center is one of the projects. Work this summer will largely lay the groundwork for bigger changes to come. UI senior associate athletic director Tom Michael said there have been a few, minor "bumps" but overall the project is on schedule.

The $95 million renovation of the Electrical and Computer Engineering facility is nearing completion. The 235,000-square-foot building will have more than 1,000 solar panels on the roof. New dorms are being built at a nearly $77 million price tag. They'll have nearly 500 beds, include semi-suites, and should open in fall 2016.

Construction is scheduled to finish in spring of next year on a $14 million center for wounded veterans. And after several delays a more than $73 million renovation of the Natural History Building, which dates to 1892, is to start next month. The building has been partially closed since 2010 because of concerns over structural integrity.

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