The University of Regina has officially opened its new sign and surrounding 'gateway' area — a nearly $1 million project that some have called too pricey.

The sign, made up of giant, stainless steel letters on a Tyndall stone base, is located at the main entrance at Kramer Boulevard and Wascana Parkway. It costs $378,000 and is supposed to last for 100 years.

University of Regina sign

The old sign at the main entrance to the University of Regina was smaller than the new one and was surrounded by trees. (CBC)

The site improvement part of the project includes new sidewalks, pathways and improved lighting. That cost $542,000.

New landscaping added another $30,000 to the bill, which totals about $960,000.

Some on campus have questioned spending that much money on a sign in an era when dollars are tight, but the university says the old sign — small and located under some trees — had outlived its usefulness.

In a news release, U of R vice-president Dave Button said he's proud of the sign and gateway.

"These investments to improve the safety, accessibility and attractiveness of this part of our campus will pay dividends for the hundreds of thousands who will use the gateway over its 100 year lifespan," Button said.