Vulcan Materials donates construction materials for VCU Inger Rice Lodge project

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Rendering of the overnight lodge.
Rendering of the overnight lodge.

The VCU Rice Rivers Center has received tons of support — 475 tons, to be exact — from Vulcan Materials. A donation of rock aggregate has created a stable foundation for a new overnight lodge, a project that will allow up to two dozen students and researchers to stay on-site for intensive fieldwork and instruction.

The 5,000-square-foot lodge, and planned 14,000 square-foot research laboratory, will bolster the center’s research capabilities and teaching mandate. 

“Vulcan Materials is an important user of the James River. They move their products on the James River daily, so they understand the importance of multiple use of a large river,” said Rice Rivers Center Director Greg Garman, Ph.D. “The VCU Rice Rivers Center greatly appreciates Vulcan’s long-term commitment to our mission, and we look forward to expanding that relationship.”

In 2011, Vulcan donated, transported and placed aggregate materials to help VCU and its partners build an artificial reef in the James River. That was part of a long-term project to restore endangered populations of Atlantic sturgeon in the James River and Chesapeake Bay.

“Vulcan has already supported us with construction of a sturgeon reef, so they get our mission. They are a neighbor and they are being supportive,” said Catherine Dahl, director of development for the center.

“It’s a game changer because we can now have people on site,” Dahl said of the rock aggregate donation. 

The 342-acre site is located in Charles City County. The lodge is currently under construction, and the research facility is in the fundraising stage.

Vulcan has also donated aggregates for the road leading into the center.


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