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        Princeton Welcomes in New Year with Start of $300 Million Project

        Date:Jan 8,2013

         Princeton officials made the decision last week to approve funding for a new arts and transit building. The $300 million project is finally scheduled to begin in February 2013, after nearly six years of planning and countless debates.

        The project will include three new arts buildings, designed by architect Steven Holl and will house the Lewis Center for the Arts and some functions of the Department of Music. The plans also include designs by architect Rick Joy, for a new Dinky train station and Wawa convenience store, as well as renovation of the existing rail station buildings to include a restaurant and café. Infrastructure improvements to the site and adjacent roadways, a multimodal transit center and extensive landscaping are also part of the project, according to a university statement.

        The project will break ground early this year, but is not expected to be complete until 2017. The project has been in the talks since 2006 when the university announced its 10-year comprehensive campus plan, which included plans for the University’s Arts and Transit Neighborhood project. The Princeton Borough and Princeton Township granted zoning approval for the project but a sigh of relief for university officials came last week when the planning board voted 9-1 in favor of the final site plan for the project.

        “I want to express my appreciation to the Planning Board members and staff for all of the time they devoted to this project and for giving us the green light to proceed with a project that I am convinced will have a transformative impact on the arts at the university and in the community,” said Shirley Tilghman, university president in a statement. “I believe the project will create an attractive new gateway into the community and will meet a broad range of goals related to transit issues and sustainability that are important to both the community and the university.”

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