Murray State University is moving forward with restoring and enhancing the residential college destroyed in an explosion last summer.
The Murray State Board of Regents voted on Friday to proceed with restoring the existing structure of J.H. Richmond Hall and allocated $2 million from housing reserves to enhance the building.
Insurance will cover bringing the building back to the its state prior to the blast last June with an estimated cost of around $12.3 million.
The dorm’s original architects Luckett & Farley presented options on Thursday for possible design changes that include expanding the lobby and adding natural lighting.
Architects said they were “extremely confident” in the building’s structural integrity. Restoration would involve significantly stripping down a majority of the building.
The board will determine any design changes at a later date.
Work is expected to begin quickly with a target reopening by July 2019.
One employee was injured in a natural gas related blast last year. The incident is still under state fire marshal investigation.