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Illinois Capital Development Board announces construction kickoff for student services and adult education building

by Jim Underwood, Executive Director, Capital Development Board | Published Feb 25, 2021

WAUKEGAN – The Illinois Capital Development Board (CDB) today announced construction has begun on the new Student Services / Adult Education Building on College of Lake County's (CLC) Lakeshore Campus in Waukegan. The $48 million project is moving forward thanks to Governor JB Pritzker’s bipartisan Rebuild Illinois capital plan, the first in nearly a decade. The State of Illinois is funding $35.3 million of the project with the remainder covered by local matching funds. CDB will oversee the project’s design and construction under the protocol for state-appropriated capital projects and has selected George Sollitt Construction Company as the low bid construction company for the project.

Lakeshore Rendering 6_2020“Through the Rebuild Illinois capital plan, the state is investing millions of dollars into educational facilities across the state to ensure our students have access to state of the art facilities needed to reach their goals,” said Governor Pritzker. “This new center at the College of Lake County will not only be a resource where students can receive additional support and guidance but will also provide a dedicated space where adults can continue their higher education journey and achieve their full potential.”

Photo: rendering of what the Student Center will look like

“It is immediately clear upon visiting the Lakeshore Campus of the College of Lake County how integral this institution is to the Waukegan community,” said State Senator Adriane Johnson. “The new Student Services center and additional renovations will provide educational resources that local students need to thrive both while they are in school, and in their future careers.”

CLC Lakeshore Campus“The College of Lake County Lakeshore Campus is an important hub of downtown Waukegan, serving the education and career advancement needs of our community. For that, I am thankful to have this infusion of resources in order to construct the new Students Services/Adult Education Building, and also renovate existing structures on campus,” said State Representative Rita Mayfield, member of the House Appropriations-Elementary & Secondary Education Committee. "From early childhood learning to continuing education for adults, the College of Lake County has demonstrated a cradle to career mission that will be further enhanced once this important project is completed.”

“It’s an exciting day to be able to announce the construction of the new Student Services/Adult Education Building at the College of Lake County Lakeshore Campus,” said State Representative Sam Yingling. “As a life-long resident of Lake County, I have seen the tremendous impact this institution has had in the community, and a project of this magnitude will ensure the College of Lake County remains competitive in both attracting and producing talent."

“Waukegan’s College of Lake County Lake Shore Campus has always provided a good education and much-needed services to local students. This addition will empower CLC to reach even more residents,” said State Senator Melinda Bush, a member of the Senate Education Committee. “Strong educational institutions are vital to strong communities. I look forward to seeing the Lake Shore Campus continue to grow into a hub for advancement in Lake County.” 

CLC Lakeshore Construction 

The new 62,692 square-foot Student Center will consist of support services, a library, community meeting space, Welcome and One-Stop Center, laboratories, and career placement. The Adult Education services will be included in the Student Center and will consist of four testing rooms, a tutoring center, four general education classrooms, and a large multi-purpose space that can be subdivided.

Photo: demolition and digging having been taking place in preparation to pour the building's foundation

“This substantial development provides comprehensive student support services and programs in Waukegan designed to meet the regional high-demand advanced workforce needs,” said CLC Board of Trustees Chair Dr. William M. Griffin. “We want a first-class facility in Waukegan. Together with Waukegan Mayor Sam Cunningham, we anticipate this urban campus project to serve as a catalyst for future downtown development.”

“The Lakeshore Campus along Genesee Street serves as a community hub, supports economic growth by ensuring educational attainment leading to family-sustaining careers, and through community partnerships, offers access to events and job fairs that benefit the entire community,” said CLC President Dr. Lori Suddick.

In addition to the new construction, the project will include 4,665 square feet of existing building renovation consisting of improvements to the Children’s Learning Center and the science laboratory plus renovation for a new classroom.

“The Capital Development Board is eager to kick off construction at the College of Lake County Lakeshore for their Student Services/Adult Education Building. The anticipated addition to the Lakeshore campus will help further establish the presence of the college in downtown Waukegan. The facility will be an impressive addition and will provide students with new spaces and opportunities to develop in their fields of interest and thrive,” said CDB Executive Director Jim Underwood.

The completion of the Student Center will provide further opportunities for the college to continue program expansions in other fields of interest, including digital media, manufacturing, hospitality, horticulture, and entrepreneurship through the renovation of existing facilities.

The historic Rebuild Illinois capital plan passed with bipartisan super-majorities and will invest $45 billion in roads, bridges, railways, universities, early childhood centers and state facilities like the new crime lab and veterans’ homes, creating and supporting an estimated 540,000 jobs over the life of the six-year plan and revitalizing local economies across the state.

About College of Lake County:

College of Lake County is a comprehensive community college committed to equitable high-quality education, cultural enrichment and partnerships to advance the diverse communities it serves in northeastern Illinois. Offered at three campuses in Grayslake, Vernon Hills and Waukegan or online, college classes are affordable and accessible to help each student achieve academic, career and personal goals. More than 70,000 students graduated with degrees and certificates since the college opened in 1969. The College of Lake County is the only higher-education institution ranked among the top 15 best places to work in Illinois by Forbes and is a national leader in many areas, including sustainability and conservation. Learn more at or call (847) 543-2000.