Santa Rosa Junior College Construction Training Center Project Delayed Due to Soaring Costs

Supply chain issues and financial pressures caused Santa Rosa Junior College to delay the grand opening of its construction education center at its Petaluma campus.

Catherine Williams, Ph.D., faculty manager at the construction training center, said the start of the project, which was scheduled to begin last month, will be pushed back by at least eight months.

“We are currently seeking $4 million in additional funding from the Economic Development Administration (USA) for construction costs to address the dramatic increase in material, wood and steel costs. , caused by supply chain factors,” Williams told the Business Journal. “If fully funded this spring, we will begin work in fall 2022, with completion in spring 2024.”

Williams said she doesn’t have a specific date from the EDA as to when she will respond to the request for the grant change, but she hopes to hear it by mid-March. The project was originally expected to cost $8.1 million.

Meanwhile, there has been progress on another aspect of the project. TLCD Architecture completed design work on the building on Dec. 3, which will be housed at SRJC’s Petaluma campus.

It was January 2020 when the community college and the Sonoma County Economic Development Board jointly announced a $7.12 million grant for the construction of the SRJC Construction Center. The grant was funded by the US Economic Development Administration’s Disaster Relief Fund.

Last year in September, it was announced that the project had received a $250,000 grant from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation.

“The centre, operating at full capacity, should be able to produce up to 500 skilled job seekers each year, which will have a significant impact on the critical shortage of skilled workers in the construction industry,” said said Nancy Miller, Regional Director of Adult Education. programs for SRJC and the Sonoma County Adult Education Consortium, said in the January 2020 announcement.

Construction is the second fastest growing industry for jobs in Sonoma County, with 9% expected between 2020 and 2023, according to figures from the Sonoma County Economic Development Board that Williams presented in May at the Business Journal’s Building the North Bay Construction Conference virtual event.

“Our construction-related industries are in a pressure cooker of demands,” Williams said at the event.

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