Dayton Proposes Funding Former Armory Renovations
ST. CLOUD -- Governor Mark Dayton is recommending to fund a major renovation in St. Cloud through his bonding proposal.
Dayton recommends funding $4.45-million to renovate and expand the Minnesota National Gaurd Readiness Center, formerly known as the armory.
Major Patrick Foley is the officer in charge of the 682nd Engineer Battalion, which is the largest unit stationed in the facility. He says the project would include several updates to the building.
"The project will include a modern HVAC system, modern electrical distribution, modern data distribution, fire suppression, accessibility for disabled personnel, as well as significant energy improvements."
Along with building improvements, Foley says they would also be making upgrades to better serve a dual gender force. In 1960, when the facility was built primarily men were in the military, now it's more prevalent to see women taking military positions. With more women joining, Foley says they need to upgrade and add more women's locker rooms and restrooms to the facility.
A 1,500 square-foot expansion would also be in the works. The addition would be used for a classroom and administrative space.
Foley says all of the proposed upgrades will help the National Gaurd train for success and better serve the St. Cloud community.
"First and foremost it will extend the life of this facility another 25-30 years."
He adds that the community will continue to be able to rent the facility for certain events.
Dayton recommended a total of $1.54-billion in his bonding proposal to help fund projects that are "urgently needed" in the state.