Construction for Traditions Plaza will begin within a week

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 | 11:49 a.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Mel Carnahan Quadrangle, the land behind Tiger Plaza, will be home to the soon-to-be constructed Mizzou Alumni Association's Traditions Plaza.

The proposed plaza, located along Conley Avenue across from Jesse Hall and next to Reynolds Alumni Center, will be an outdoor amphitheater with tiered seating that students, faculty, staff and visitors can use for programming or as a gathering place, according to a university news release.

"The plaza will take up most if not all of the northernmost circle of the quad," University spokesman Nathan Hurst said. Mel Carnahan Quadrangle has four circles — the southernmost circle is adjacent to Rollins Street and the northernmost circle, the proposed site of Traditions Plaza, is adjacent to Conley Avenue.

Hurst said the plaza will cost about $1 million.

Construction will start in the next week and dedication of the plaza is slated for Oct. 24 during Homecoming weekend, according to the Alumni Association's website.

After the selling of engraved bricks for the Mizzou Legacy Walk outside Reynolds Alumni Center was a success, the idea for Traditions Plaza was formed, Mizzou Alumni Association Executive Director Todd McCubbin said. The Mizzou Legacy Walk was created to celebrate MU's 150th anniversary.

"(The Alumni Association) has been looking to do another project and we were hoping it could coincide with the 175th anniversary," he said, and a project that would allow more alumni to "leave their mark" on campus.

McCubbin said he believes the amphitheater will better utilize that area of the quad, as well.

A brick circle, called the "Mizzou Legacy Circle," at the southern end of the amphitheater will be reserved for alumni and friends who are part of multiple generations of MU students to buy engraved bricks. Alumni, students and recent graduates will be able to buy bricks that will make up the stage of the amphitheater, McCubbin said. 

Other bricks that will be part of the stage and pillars will be engraved with MU traditions.

He said the Alumni Association wanted to offer students a chance to buy bricks so they could contribute to the amphitheater while still on campus, and there will also be a new 8-by-8 inch-bricks that donors can buy for the stage.

The project will be initially funded by the Alumni Association's reserved funds from membership fees and fundraising. Proceeds from the brick sales will also help pay for the rest of the project, McCubbin said. Bricks will be installed before Homecoming and before graduation every year, he said. 

Extra brick sale proceeds will fund the association's student scholarship program.

Students and recent graduates can buy 4-by-8-inch bricks for $175.  Bricks for Alumni Association members will be $375 and bricks for non-members will be $425. The larger 8-by-8-inch bricks will be $500 and $550 for Alumni Association members and non-members respectively, according to the association's website.

Supervising editor is Samuel Hardiman

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