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Forum on Campus Master Plan Update Nov. 3

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An open forum on the update of the campus master plan is set for Thursday, Nov. 3 from 12:40-2 p.m. in New Hampshire Hall, 208.
“The campus master plan update is an important next step in the implementation of the strategic plan. I encourage all members of our community to participate and share their thoughts and ideas as we update this important framework for campus development and renovations,” said President Mark Huddleston.

The 20-year master plan, approved in 2004, includes broad programming for all campus entities.  It includes projected space needs and demonstrates feasibility including transportation and traffic analyses, landscape master planning, building design guidelines, and prioritized identification of all anticipated new and renovation projects.

Many of the projects identified in 2004 have been completed providing an opportunity for a review of priorities and program assumptions. Evolving opportunities include:

  • 2010 adoption of a university strategic plan focused on curriculum and teaching with subsequent impact on campus facilities. In particular, the strategic plan calls for the development of a Center for the Arts. Determining the scope and location of what would potentially be a large footprint and highly visible building must be done in the context of overall campus development needs.
  • Construction of the Paul College of Business and Economics building will allow the business school to vacate McConnell Hall. Reuse of this building is an opportunity to meet some of the many competing needs for better or more suitable space. A careful analysis of the best use for McConnell, and any resulting daisy chain of other moves to best serve the overall interests of the university, requires careful study and planning.
  • Site selection of graduate student and family housing needs to be readdressed in the context of overall campus development. The previously identified site at Leawood Orchard was deemed too far from the core campus for many graduate students who like the convenience of being within walking distance of their labs.
  • Greater emphasis on interdisciplinary programs and resulting facility implications.
  • An updated review of academic programs and student service space requirements is needed to reflect evolving program expectations and shifts in research emphasis and funding. This review will provide updated information on programs that may be outgrowing existing space and will identify opportunities where space can be better utilized.

To respond to these opportunities, the university has embarked on a focused update of the plan. A steering committee and a representative campus master planning committee have been established. A team consisting of Campus Planning staff along with consultants Architerra Inc. of Boston and JBA 1ncorporated of Fort Collins, Colo., will gather data; evaluate scenarios for consideration; and develop recommendations with the intent of delivering an updated campus master plan to the president by the summer 2012, with trustee approval in the fall 2012. 

Meetings with various constituent groups to define space needs will take place during the fall semester and the analysis and planning will follow in the spring 2012. Detailed information will be posted regularly at http://www.unh.edu/cmp/ and on social media outlets. Comments and suggestions can be shared at cmp.ideas@unh.edu.