UCA's McCastlain Hall Receives $800,000 Grant for Renovations

One of the eight buildings a part of the University of Central Arkansas' Historic District, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, will soon receive a facelift thanks to an $800,000 grant from the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council.

McCastlain Hall, constructed in 1939, will benefit from a restoration of many of its original features, in addition to receiving an update in technology. The East Commons will get a coffered ceiling and updated audio and visual equipment. Also included in the near $1 million project is a new Grand Hallway to create a pathway between the East Commons, historic Fireplace Room and the Baum Gallery of Art.

President Tom Courtway said this is the largest grant of the five UCA has received from ANCRC. Most recently, the university received a $300,000 grant for the renovation of Ida Waldran in 2011 and $152,000 to add two restrooms to Old Main in 2012.

"UCA is committed to honoring its past by preserving for future use many of the historic buildings on campus," Courtway said in the release.

Fredricka Sharkey, associate director of media relations, said the fund become available July 1 and must be used within two years. At this time no exact dates for construction start and finish dates have been set, Sharkey said.