The Board of Trustees of Illinois State University approved the purchase of a parcel of farmland, an acoustical improvement project for Braden Auditorium, and emergency roofing and infrastructure repairs to several campus buildings.

The Board of Trustees authorized the University to purchase 80 acres of farmland located immediately north and adjacent to the University Farm in Lexington. The purchase of the Mifflin 80 Acre Farm will expand the University’s existing farmland holdings and be used for additional farming operations and agricultural research. The purchase price, including closing costs, is $810,000, and is paid through University reserve funds.

The Board gave its approval to install improved acoustical paneling in Braden Auditorium. The original acoustical banners and curtains have deteriorated, compromising the auditorium’s acoustical properties. The project will involve removal of the existing banners and draperies, the installation of fabric-covered acoustical panels, and the repainting of the orchestra, mezzanine, and balcony seating areas. The project cost is $625,000, paid for with bond revenue and general revenue funds.

Trustees gave the go-ahead to emergency roofing repair projects on the Science Laboratory Building, Turner Hall, and the Ropp Agriculture Building. The $2,253,000 in funding for the projects comes from the state’s Capital Development Board. New roof membrane systems will be installed on those buildings to replace roof systems that have deteriorated to the point of failure.

Trustees also approved emergency infrastructure repairs to College of Fine Arts buildings. The $3,013,000 project is funded by the state’s Capital Development Board. This is the third part of a three-phase project to repair infrastructure in the ageing Fine Arts facilities. The work will involve repairs to bathroom plumbing and domestic water piping systems, rebuilding and upgrading air handler units, water pump and grease trap replacements, and isolation valve installations.