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October 2018, Community Forum Newsletter

Next Community Forum

Wednesday, January 23, 2019 | 6:30-8 p.m.
S.J. Quinney College of Law, Sixth floor, Room 6500
383 University Street, Salt Lake City

The College of Law is located on the northeast corner of 400 South and University Street (1400 East), see map.

Free parking is available in the lot to the east of the law building and the Rice-Eccles Stadium parking lot. The university will not be enforcing parking during this meeting. We strongly encourage you to use public transportation, if possible. Take the TRAX University Red Line to the Stadium stop, the Red Route for the university’s free campus shuttles (Carlson Hall stop) and for other public transit options use UTA’s Trip Planner or click the “Transit” option under “Get Directions” on Google maps.

We welcome your attendance, comments and participation in the discussion.

AGENDA of Next Forum

  • TBD

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Recap of the May 31, 2018 Community Forum

Preface to the October meeting

“What are you doing about traffic?” It’s a question that gets asked most frequently by U neighbors. In addition to the TRAX and bus partnership with UTA that all faculty, staff, and students can utilize, the U is addressing this in other subtler ways.

On-campus housing for undergraduates will be increasing by nearly 1000 beds by 2020. Partnered/family housing has reached a critical point and decisions must be made to better serve that population. Online courses are increasing steadily from year to year. And the U Health system is bringing a new center online to bring care and expertise into more neighborhoods.

While these initiatives are not at the forefront of visibility, constant and consistent strides are being made to reduce the traffic to, from and around the U.

A tragic loss of life

On Monday, Oct. 22, 2018, Lauren McCluskey, a 21-year-old U student and member of the track and field team, was killed in a senseless act of violence on campus. At the vigil in her honor held two days later, Athletic Director Mark Harlan encouraged the entire U community to “Leave a Legacy” in honor of Lauren.

In August of this year, University of Utah Athletics gave T-shirts to all student-athletes with the words “Leave a Legacy” printed on them. The meaning at the time was to encourage the athletes to compete their hardest, perform their best in the classroom and give back to the community. Those words now have a new meaning.

Read more here.

Emergency Campus Notifications

In the days and weeks since the tragic events of Oct. 22, 2018, community members have asked how they can receive emergency information. The University of Utah realizes that these events also impact your neighborhoods. We want to keep you informed.

Download the U HEADS UP! app today.

The app provides students, faculty, staff, and visitors with a quick-reference campus emergency response guide, a photo and comment upload to tell us about your safety concerns around campus, and push notifications from our Campus Alert system. Get the important emergency information you need to stay safe at the University of Utah.

Barb Remsburg, director, Housing & Residential Education

Construction began in early November on the new student housing facility on campus. For now, called the 2020 project, when complete this facility will house 992 students. Raising the total number of students living on campus to 4,398.

Data shows that students living on campus during their first year of college have a 12 percent greater chance of graduating on time. The university administration has charged Housing & Residential Education with prioritizing first-year students for on-campus housing options. In 2018 the number of first-year students was a record setting 4,256 and our most diverse class to date.

This new building will have three wings and incorporate both Living Learning and Theme communities, read more about those here. The three themed wings will be health and wellness, technology initiative, and community engagement. All designed to bring students together through shared study and gathering spaces.

The facility will have plenty of eating options for residents and the campus community. There will be several different food options with the possibility of a rotating option. Local vendors will have the opportunity to set up shop in a fully functioning kitchen space and serve their cuisine for a full week.

While not a requirement, students living on campus are strongly encouraged to leave their cars at home. With access to meals where they live, plenty of planned activities and access to mass transit, there shouldn’t be a need for personal vehicles.

Jennifer Reed, director, Auxiliary Services

The 1,100 apartments built in the early 1960s and 70s for married students, now serving students that are partnered, married, have children or dependents, and single or partnered graduate students, faculty, and academic staff.

Three locations:

  • 151 in the Medical Plaza (two towers and five townhomes)
  • 322 in the East Village
  • 621 in the West Village

Unfortunately, the villages have outlived their useful lives. The wet utilities are failing in a major way, under the roads, within the courts, and in the apartment buildings. A utility infrastructure study has been performed and the results have shown all of the wet utilities, communication utilities, and electricity need to be replaced.

University Student Apartments are in final negotiations for a consultant to conduct a market demand study. This will indicate the type of demand for a potential new product and price point for family, graduate, and staff housing. Currently, the pricing for apartments in the villages are “artificially low” compared to the market in the valley.

When the demand study is complete, the university administration will determine next steps for new construction.

Thomas Kline, outpatient service director, University of Utah Health

The University of Utah Health system consists of 12 health care centers. Ranging from Farmington to the north, Orem to the south, Kimball Junction to the east, and Stansbury Park to the west in Toole. Providing outpatient services to our patients in their own communities. And expanding services to provide better customer service and subsequently divert traffic from the main campus.

A new multispecialty Sugarhouse location will open Oct. 1, 2019, and be 170,000 square feet. Patients will now be able to see U specialists in their own neighborhoods. Advances in technology allow procedures like endoscopy, general surgery, and cancer treatments to be performed more safely and easily. The Huntsman Cancer Institute will be treating patients in Sugarhouse.

Outpatient visits across the 12 locations in fiscal year 2018 nearly reached 580 thousand visits. This number is anticipated to grow with the addition of the Sugarhouse location.

Cory Stokes, digital learning officer, University of Utah UOnline 

Online learning has been offered on campus since 2001. In 2017, 18,000 students—more than half of the student body—took at least one online course. Roughly 1,300 students in an average semester are taking 100 percent of their courses online. That number is expected to grow.

Today, there are 15 programs—both bachelor’s and master’s degrees—that are offered completely online, mostly in social and behavioral sciences. In fact, there are five students in a refugee camp in Africa earning their online degrees with scholarships provided by the United Nations.

Another way the U is supporting our students is by provide all the software needed for coursework online. They can access the tools they need at any time on their own devices. And students are beginning to meet with their academic advisors via video chat.

Students taking online courses increases by 8 percent each year. This gets our students to graduation on time in four years, rather than six or eight.

Bill Salter, PhD., director of radiation oncology at HCH and professor and chief of the division of medical physics at the U
Andrew King, senior campus planning manager, Planning, Design & Construction 

The Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah will soon offer a new technology to treat cancer patients that provides more targeted radiation therapy—an advantage when treating many tumors in and around vital structures, such as the spinal cord and brain stem, or for certain childhood tumors.

The new equipment delivers proton therapy, which uses a precise beam of protons—only a few millimeters wide—to target tumors. This will become the first proton center in the Mountain West region and construction on the new facility that will house the equipment will begin in early January 2019.

Bonneville Shoreline Trail Impacts

A short portion of the lower trail will be temporarily closed for approximately two years so it can be used to haul materials in and out from the work site, including dirt, concrete, other materials and the proton therapy machinery. The closure is designed to ensure the safety of workers and trail users. Trail users are encouraged to access the upper trail at one of many connection points, as it will not be affected by the project.

The lower trail will be closed Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., and it will be open most weekends.

The university has worked closely with the Heritage Preserve, which owns part of the impacted area, to ensure all guidelines are followed and the area is properly protected and restored after project completion.

Robin Burr, chief of design and construction, University of Utah Facilities Management

The Cleone Eccles Alumni House Expansion, Garff Executive Business Education, and Gardner Commons are now complete and the center of campus is largely restored.

The 2008 Campus Master Plan designated this area in the center of campus as green space. Phase one will be the installation of an NCAA regulation soccer field and lacrosse practice field. Phase two will be to build a stadium that includes locker rooms, seating, concessions, and restrooms.

Some parking in the near area will also be removed and converted into recreational fields and will double as storm water retention ponds.

Expansion to the west of the existing structure. The ground floor will have expanded meeting spaces/conference rooms. The upper floors will be designed as suites with kitchenettes to better serve patrons requiring longer stays.

A footbridge is being installed to increase accessibility to the Guest House. Currently those needing to get to the Guest House either trample the glen or have to walk around the glen.

Two terraced lots with storm water retention ponds are being installed to the north and east of the Eccles Broadcast Center. This is replacing the parking being taken from the new housing and soccer/lacrosse projects. The north parking lot opened Nov. 15, 2018.

Mobility transit hubs
The university is working with Salt Lake City, the VA, UTA, and UDOT to look at how to best serve the campus and Research Park. The location of the new parking lots is being evaluated as a future site to house one of these hubs. The idea would be to get on a shuttle at this location and ride it up to the University of Utah Health campus area.

Previously called the Ambulatory Care Complex because it was not initially designed with patient beds, it does now. Phase one, the clinics, will open in June 2019.

The steel frame is now up and work is proceeding. When complete, it will have 75 beds and will open in January 2020.

A live video stream and time lapse can be viewed here.

The design is currently being re-evaluated. Decanting and demolition will not begin until the ACC and Rehabilitation Hospital are complete.