School's out for summer, but that doesn't mean traffic near the University of Tennessee's campus is about to get any better.

Construction is about to be a lot more active. Campus is alive with students in town for orientation, and bright orange is everywhere.

It's not just school pride, but a lot of construction cones.

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With multiple construction projects in the summer means a lot of cool new features for students to come back to for fall 2018.

"They keep us awfully busy around here, they've got a great vision going on for what they want the campus to be," said Andy Powers, Director of Design Services for UT.

On Cumberland Avenue, the new 250,000 square foot Ken and Blaire Mossman Building is set to open this August to life sciences students and research faculty.

"This science building's something that we've been starved at for a long time," said Powers. "We studied ourselves vs. our peers and we think we're several hundred thousand square feet short of research space, which this this building is primarily a research teaching space."

Powers said the $96 million facility is finishing on time and under budget.

"We hope to have a certificate of occupancy by the end of next week which will allow us to move furniture in," said Powers.

Right down the road, streetscaping continues on Volunteer Boulevard, with various lane closures expected throughout the summer.

Crews will be fixing storm water drainage problems, and making campus more pedestrian-friendly

"Part of the campus vision is to let the students rule the day, and the faculty that walk around," said Powers. "So we want to push the cars to the perimeter as much as we can."

Even though these projects are set to be done by August, UT has a lot more improvement planning in the works.

Powers said they've budgeted for a lot more to come, including:

  • $1 billion for new construction
  • $50 million for classroom renovations
  • $50 million for facility infrastructure improvements
  • $25 million for campus beautification
  • $2 million for sustainability

Also this summer, be on the look out for fences going up for a groundbreaking on a new engineering building and construction to continue on upgrades on the west side of campus.

You can see timelines and details for all current campus construction projects here.