FARGO — Dignitaries that include representatives of the Catholic Church, North Dakota State University and the city of Fargo took part in a symbolic groundbreaking Monday, June 24, for what will become the new St. Paul's Newman Center in North Fargo.

The ceremony took place in what is now a parking lot, but eventually will be the heart of an approximately $21.5 million project that will include a new 450-seat chapel and an 88-bed faith-based housing complex for students and priests.

Monday's event included remarks from the Rev. Jim Cheney, the center's director; the Very Rev. John Folda, bishop of the Fargo Diocese; Dean Bresciani, president of North Dakota State University, and Tim Mahoney, the mayor of Fargo.

Roers Development is the main contractor on the project and the Fargo company is hoping to build an $11.5 million, 85-unit market rate apartment building near the Newman Center.

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That aspect of the project has yet to be finalized as city commissioners weigh whether to provide tax incentives for that part of the project.