TTU System's facility administrator leaves his legacy on campus

TTU System's facility administrator leaves his legacy on campus

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

New buildings and renovations are constantly in the works and Texas Tech's campus is always changing.

TTU System's Vice Chancellor for Facilities Planning & Construction Michael Molina is the driving force behind these projects. However, his tenure in the system is coming to an end. 

For Molina, he is living out his families legacy. He graduated from Tech with a bachelors in architecture in 1991 and has been in Lubbock for 32 years. Molina said his passion for the campus is derived from his lineage. 

"My dad was a design tech and contractor in Dallas," Molina said. "My mothers family, you can trace back to Castilian, Spain and that's really one of the core birth places of the Plateresque style or Spanish Renaissance revival."

He had administrated more than 70 projects, ensuring each maintains the style. He said one of his most exciting projects was renovating the Jones.

"Since we've been here, there's been a lot of changes, not only to the architecture, really to the environmental aspect," Molina said.

About 2 and a half years ago, the north side was redone with a brand-new jumbo-tron. They have added a north-end zone club and lower seating, but the renovations are not done. Molina said the next step is remodeling the south endzone. 

"You feel it, you're a red raider, even before the Masked Rider comes out or before the smoke starts coming out of the team," Molina said. "Just being in this place on game day is very very magical." 

Tech recently celebrated the opening of the new Sports Performance Center with a full 200 meter indoor track and indoor football practice field. 

Molina said this cutting-edge facility was a result of a unique and bold approach to solving issues the "Bubble" had. 

"Working with athletics on this project, was a true blessing - it was a tough project," Molina said. "It was a tight budget for what we got and these guys really put the pen to the paper and had to make some tough decisions on a lot of detail. We were fortunate enough to dance with them on the project and here we stand with a finished project." 

However, It is not just athletic facilities that excite Molina

"We have a spirit of the campus, architecturally, so I can get a little corny but I think our buildings talk to each other really well," Molina said.

One of his final projects is the environmental sciences building II. 

"It's probably going to be one of the most beautiful architectural expressions for our campus and not knocking any other facilities," Molina said, "but it's going to embody that same spirit and detailing." 

Molina said he will continue his career at Southern Methodist University, but he is thankful for the numerous projects to always look back on. 

"Our mission going forward, now that I'm leaving to Dallas to go from Spanish Renaissance to Collegiate Georgian, which is what SMU is," Molina said. "We need to hold onto those architectural heritage points that really make us special and that's what creates the spirit of our campus." 

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