MESA STATE COLLEGE WILL REMODEL PLANT TO HOUSE GROWING DEGREE PROGRAMS

Leitner-Poma of America’s old manufacturing facility won’t sit vacant for long after the real estate arm of Mesa State College purchased the property as a new home for some of the school’s programs.

Mesa State’s mechanical engineering and construction management programs, as well as the machine shop currently on the Western Colorado Community College campus, will be relocated to the former Leitner-Poma facility, 2510 Foresight Circle. The plan is to have this done by fall.

The Mesa State Real Estate Foundation completed the purchase of the property, which is adjacent to the WCCC campus, in December from Leitner-Poma for $4.75 million and will lease the property to the college under a 10-year lease for $400,000 a year.

Mesa State President Tim Foster said the majority of the facility is already open warehouse space and will require minimal remodeling to accommodate the programs.

“We’re to the point of hiring a construction manager and moving forward,” Kent Marsh, Mesa State director of facilities services, said of the remodel progress.

Bids for the remodel project are being accepted through the end of this week with construction beginning shortly after the winning bid is selected next week.

The facility sits on 10 acres and is roughly 38,000 square feet.

Mesa State spokeswoman Dana Nunn said the purchase benefited from the timing of the facility coming available and the college needing space for new programs.

This year marks the first year of Mesa State offering a construction management degree and a mechanical engineering degree through a partnership with the University of Colorado, Boulder.

“WCCC is kinda packed to the gills anyway,” Nunn said. “They needed some growing room.”

The facility housed Leitner-Poma’s manufacturing operations for 25 years before the company announced in 2007 it would build a new, expanded facility.

A 90,000-square-foot facility spread between two buildings opened Monday at 2746 Saccomanno Drive, which is near Grand Junction Regional Airport.

Leitner-Poma builds ski lifts, fixed and detachable chairlifts, gondolas, aerial tramways and a number of other cable transport systems.

The Mesa State Real Estate Foundation sold bonds through the Colorado Educational and Cultural Facilities Authority, a Denver-based organization that loans money to educational and cultural institutions through the sale of tax-exempt bonds, for the purchase of the property.

Leitner-Poma on Monday donated $500,000 to Mesa State during the company’s unveiling of its new facility.


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