Foundation for IUP gifts three buildings in downtown Punxsy to IUP

Staff Writer

PUNXSUTAWNEY — The Foundation for Indiana University of Pennsylvania has gifted three buildings in downtown Punxsutawney to Indiana University of Pennsylvania, according to a release issued on Tuesday. The buildings include the Fairman Centre, located at the corner of West Mahoning Street and South Findley Street; the adjoining Agape property at 105 West Mahoning Street; and the adjoining Miller property at 115, 117 and 119 West Mahoning St.

As funding becomes available, the two buildings beside the Fairman Centre will be razed to permit new construction. The new construction by IUP will house the Academy of Culinary Arts. The total project, including the razing of these two structures, is estimated at between $15 million and $18 million. The project will respect and retain the historic façade of the Agape property. Fundraising is already underway by IUP for this initiative through IUP’s Imagine Unlimited fundraising campaign.

Since its founding in 1989, more than 4,000 students have studied in Punxsutawney at the Academy of Culinary Arts, which has continued to meet and exceed its enrollment goals. “We believe there is great potential for growth at the Academy of Culinary Arts,” IUP President Dr. Michael Driscoll said. “Securing these buildings leverages the advantages we already have in Punxsutawney, which includes not only our current facilities, like the Fairman Centre and our West End Living-Learning building, but our strong partnerships and a joint commitment to offering educational opportunities in this community,” IUP President Dr. Michael Driscoll said. “IUP is fully committed to Punxsutawney and to this region, and we continue to appreciate the support that this community demonstrates to us and to our students. As we move forward with this project, we will consult with our local stakeholders on the renovations and expansion. We also hope that this project will complement and catalyze further development in downtown Punxsutawney.

A timeline for the project has not yet been finalized.

For more information and details, see Wednesday's print edition of The Spirit.