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May 2018, Community Forum Newsletter

Next Community Forum

Thursday, Oct. 25, 2018 | 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

    Barb Remsburg, director, Housing & Residential Education
    Jennifer Reed, direct, Auxiliary Services 
    Dan Lundergan, chief operating officer, Hospitals and Clinics
    Jodi Emery, senior marketing and communications director, University of Utah UOnline 
    Robin Burr, chief design and construction officer, University of Utah

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Recap of the May 31, 2018 Community Forum

Neah Bois, fellow, American Dream Ideas Challenge

In May, the University of Utah was selected by Schmidt Futures to lead the American Dream Ideas Challenge. The Challenge aims to find, fund, and develop compelling ideas that help foster access to and support for a thriving middle class. Specifically, the American Dream Ideas Challenge is seeking proposals that will increase net income by 10 percent for 10,000 households in Utah by the end of 2020.

Proposals in the areas of health care, workforce development/education, transportation, housing and supports for families will be eligible for up the $1 million in funding from Schmidt Futures. Proposals are due Aug. 30.

For more information or to submit your idea, visit the official site.

Ginger Cannon, active transportation manager

The Sustainability Office presented on a commuter survey, constructions projects, U bike electric, stormwater reduction and off-site renewable energy.

Commuter Survey
This year the Sustainability Office administered the University Commuter Survey. The survey will be conducted every two years and is a snapshot of commuting habits of staff, faculty, and students. This survey is a group effort among Facilities Management, Commuter Services, and the Sustainability Office.

Over half of all survey respondents travel 8 miles or less to their campus destination. The most popular form of transportation on campus is walking (85 percent). The most popular destinations are Main Campus followed by Health Sciences. A total of 507,742 miles are traveled one-way on each weekday to the University of Utah.

Construction Projects
Every construction project is a chance to improve the pedestrian and bicycle networks on campus. Pavement markings get refreshed and new markings for safe crossings and designating areas for wheeled travel vs. pedestrian travel are added. New bicycle parking is being added at high activity areas and existing parking is upgraded to meet the current design standard for bicycle racks. Two new bicycle repair stations have been added in the East and West Villages.

U Bike Electric
The Sustainability Office partnered with local clean energy advocacy group Utah Clean Energy to develop U Bike Electric and ran the program from March to May 2018.  Using the same model as past community purchasing programs U Community Solar and U Drive Electric, U Bike Electric helped consumers find the best option for their needs by offering discounts on various e-bikes through five local dealers. Roughly 1000 people signed up for the discount program that offered 50 different makes and models and about 150 e-bikes were sold. The Sustainability Office anticipates running this program again in the future.

Myron Willson, deputy chief sustainability officer

Storm water reduction
The Williams Building lawn will be transformed into a picturesque Landscape Lab that demonstrates best practices in stormwater management. It will transform a one-acre area of water-intensive turfgrass south of the Williams Building into a picturesque, walkable space featuring local plants that reduce irrigation demand. The Williams Building is adjacent to Red Butte Creek, a tributary of the Jordan River. The lab will re-direct the water runoff from the Williams Building to its beautiful living plant communities. This allows the plant roots and microbial communities to take up pollutants and filter water through the soil to recharge the groundwater. The lab is the first phase of extensive redevelopment project for Red Butte Creek. Project managers expect to break ground on the lab in Fall 2018 and hope to complete phase one by Summer 2019.

HYPER project phase 1
Based on the model from the Williams Building, a new water conservation garden is under construction on the HYPER complex and the new Gardner Building (old OSH). The basin will store and purify conserved water at that location that will in turn support the landscaping that will be placed there as well. This project also has major support from a SCIF grant ($80K) and Red Butte Garden. More information will be shared soon.

The Public Utility Commission of Utah approved the purchase of an off-site 20 MW geothermal power plant and the project is moving forward. This project will connect to the hospital substation and will supply the campus with up to half of our total energy consumption with clean and renewable energy. If this project is completed, the U will be the largest university buyer of long-term clean energy. This agreement will be at no extra cost over the 25 years of the agreement.

Additionally, the installation of the large parking structure and solar array planned for the Merrill Engineering Building has been rescheduled for 2019. And a solar array panel installation is currently being studied for the future on the football training center on Guardsman Way.

U Recycle Day
The 2017 recycling event saw a 207 percent increase in participation from last year. The Sustainability Office also held an event during Move Out Day and almost doubled the recyclable materials than in years past. New recycling bins are also being installed at Rice-Eccles Stadium for the new season.

Jonathon Bates, executive director, Real Estate Administration

Research Park Vision + Design Study
An academic studio on the future of research park

A public open house was held on April 12 at the College of Architecture + Planning on campus. Students and faculty from the college have been working in an academic studio on behalf of Research Park. The open house invited comment on any and all aspects of the research and ideas presented.

Throughout the room, the informational materials covered the context, visions, guiding principles, case studies, and the programming that was suggested by students to work well in future plans. Sixty-five community members provided comments and feedback on the work.

Preliminary findings

  • Plenty of discussion about the existing conditions: About 198 developable acres
  • Affirmation of the Research Park vision and its 10 forward-thinking components; including the complete community in Research Park
  • Desire for dedicated lane or fixed rail transit circulator
  • Desire for higher intensity housing and a town center
  • Agreement that social programming is just as important as the physical
  • Desire for significant open space programming

Concerns were raised by some of the attending community members about the number of acres that could be developed and the possible uses.

A clarification was made that the findings and suggestions of this academic studio are not definitive nor absolute. The research gathered will help Research Park put together its RFP for a consultant to produce a new master plan. This new master plan will guide Research Park into the future.

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

Repaving began in May on three sides of the campus. The project began with North Campus Drive at the Kennecott Building but was halted due to patient safety concerns for those needing to get to the hospital. Construction was then moved to Mario Capecchi and South Campus Drive simultaneously. Once those roads were completed, construction began again on North Campus Drive without further issues. UDOT worked closely with the university to plan around larger events like commencement and local high school graduations.

Relocating the women's soccer stadium to make way for the undergraduate housing development. The field will be moved to the center of campus and will be developed as two large playfields. Construction will begin after the regularly scheduled season mid-November 2018. The new fields will have a structure containing stadium bleachers, locker rooms, ticketing office, and possibly a concessions area. Plans are being designed and prepared but the timing of construction of the building is dependent on when the funds are raised through Athletics.


There will be 992 beds added between the Honors housing and the basketball training facility. A 650-seat-dining service for Marriott Honors and the Lassonde Institute will also be added since neither has any real food service right now. The five-storied building has three wings with a central core. Each wing with has a theme: honors wing, health and wellness wing, and community engagement wing that will create living-learning communities. This will engage first-year students to help with retention rates. This project will be in front of the legislature to approve the proposed bond.

The north portion of the Eccles Broadcast Center parking lot expansion has been established. The disk golf field will be turned into a new parking lot which will provide over 400 new stalls. The construction is to go through the remained of summer and into the Fall 2018 Semester.

The beginning phases of this building have taken longer than expected due to facilities in the ground that were not on plans. The new building will contain 50 patient beds, operating rooms, clinics, support areas for surgeries, and staff/faculty areas. The project will cost $131.5 million and be 296,000-square feet. Construction began in February 2017 and is expected to be completed by the end of 2019, with an opening in fall 2019. FFKR Architects, HDR Architects, and Jacobsen Construction are working on this project.

Also running into problems, due to a steep grade and facilities are being found that were not on the "as-builts." Demolition on the Dumke Health Professions Education Building has begun and the first bid package has been released, which included the demolition and the beginning of relocation of underground utilities. The façade will be a combination of copper, stone paneling, and large glass windows. The new building's orientation will create and preserve a new terraced view corridor down into the valley. This project is the second building that will replace the outdated School of Medicine and will add 75 patient rooms (replacing 28), with a dedicated rehab gym, clinic, and outdoor therapy space. It will cost $95 million for the 150,000-square-foot building. Oakland Construction is working on this project.

Health Sciences is currently in the strategic planning stage for its medical curriculum. This will determine what the student body will look like in size, the courses to be provided, staff spaces, specifically looking to build a 50-plus-year building. Architect, TBD. The university is committed to moving patient visits off campus. The opening of the Farmington clinic has reduced campus patient visits by 50,000 visits per year.