Clark’s detailed plans for the new Media Arts Building

Clark University has submitted detailed plans to the City of Worcester for the college’s four-story Media Arts, Computing and Design academic building to be located on Woodland Street.

The building will be 70,280 square feet located at 151 Woodland St., which is currently a parking lot next to Clark’s Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies and the Woodland Administration Building.

The building, which will be known as the Center for Media Arts, Computing and Design, will contain a lecture hall, classrooms, virtual reality labs, incubation space, robotics lab and a library of video games.

The center will bring together the Department of Computer Science, select programs from the Department of Visual and Performing Arts, and the Becker School of Design & Technology, which Clark absorbed after Becker announced it would close in 2021.

“These three departments sharing space are ideal,” Paul Cotnoir, dean of Clark’s Becker School of Design & Technology, said in a statement. “A lot of computer science students are interested in gaming, and a lot of our gaming students are interested in computer science.”

The construction would remove 59 of the existing 78 parking spaces, leaving 19 remaining when the building is completed, according to plans. The campus will still have a surplus of 104 parking spaces for the number of classrooms and dormitories when the project is completed.

There will also be an additional 2,730 square feet of green space on the land.

The university requires final site plan approval from the planning board because the project is located in a historic district and exceeds 15,000 square feet. The request is on Wednesday’s planning council agenda.

The building is scheduled to open fall 2023. In addition to the new building on Woodland Street, Clark has purchased a vacant seven-acre parcel of land across Park Avenue from campus, which has no more final plans. The college also plans to renovate its theater center with a $2 million donation.

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