Alfond Campus

Public Relations | Alfond Campus

 

KVCC’s Harold Alfond Campus takes shape

 

Kennebec Valley Community College (KVCC) has begun the largest expansion in its 45-year history with the opening of a second campus in Hinckley, Maine.

 

Thanks to a $10.85 million gift from the Harold Alfond Foundation, KVCC two years ago acquired the central campus of the former Good Will-Hinckley(GWH) School. The property encompasses approximately 600 acres of land and more than a dozen facilities including an academic building, modern recreation center, and a 120-acre farm.

 

Officially announced at a press conference at the Blaine House in Augusta on Jan. 23 2012, the acquisition set the stage for a new chapter of growth at KVCC that will dominate affairs at the College for many years to come.

 

In May of 2012, the new campus was officially named KVCC’s Harold Alfond Campus to acknowledge the generosity of the late philanthropist Harold Alfond and the Foundation that bears his name.

 

After two years of intense development, the new campus officially opened on Aug. 25 for the fall 2014 semester. The campus is located seven miles north of KVCC's Fairfield campus.

 

Programs based at the new campus so far include sustainable agriculture, culinary arts, early childhood education, business, liberal studies, and mental health. Additional programs will be added as development proceeds.

 

The property includes a mix of fields, woods, and wetlands on the west side of U.S. Route 201 roughly bounded to the south by Green Road and to the north by Martin Stream. The parcel also includes frontage on the Kennebec River to the east of 201.

 

Major structures acquired include the Alfond/Averill School building, the Alfond Recreation Center, Moody Memorial Chapel, and numerous smaller structures.

 

KVCC also acquired the former Good Will-Hinckley farm - a 120-acre property that has now been revitalized and is central to new farm-to-table programs in sustainable agriculture, culinary arts, and food science.

 

The campus took a huge step forward in the fall of 2013 as KVCC broke ground on a new, 16,500 square-foot classroom and laboratory building that will be completed during the 2014 fall semester. It will be the first new building on the campus.Agriculture Building

 

The building will contain classrooms, faculty offices, laboratories, a computer lab, an auditorium, a student lounge and informal learning space. This new structure is central to KVCC’s transition to a two-campus college.

 

Designed with the goal of achieving net zero energy status, the building will incorporate geothermal wells and other renewable energy technologies supply electricity and energy for heating and cooling.Next up in planned development at the Alfond Campus is construction of a family laboratory and nature exploration center for the Early Childhood Education program. Ground breaking is expected in November with completion scheduled for April 2015.

 

While much remains to be decided, other proposed development in the near term includes: 

 

* Adding new parking areas on the edge of the campus core, while removing parking in the interior as part of efforts to create a more pedestrian-friendly campus.

 

* Adding a visitor’s welcome center to the farm portion of the property.

 

* Improvement and expansion of recreational trails on the wooded portions of the property.

 

Ultimately, development may include  construction of residence halls for students, further development of a central campus green, expansion of parking areas and roadways, and the addition of a cafeteria.

 

The planning process included a public forum in early May of 2012 that yielded additional ideas for the campus that are being considered as the process moves forward.

 

Though geographically separated, the current KVCC campus and the new campus are tied together by technology. Critical services on the Fairield campus are being duplicated in Hinckley.

 

For KVCC these are exciting times. The acquisition has increased the College’s acreage tenfold. Programs that would have been impossible at the current campus are suddenly feasible. A campus less than two decades old has been joined by one with more than a century of history.

 

While challenges abound, the opportunities afforded by the new Alfond Campus have positioned KVCC for opportunities far beyond anything envisioned before. The College will be proceeding carefully as that process unfolds, guided by the needs of its students and a desire to be a good steward of the historic property.

 sustainable ag students planting garlic Fall 2013