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January 2018, Community Forum Newsletter

Next Community Forum

Thursday, May 31, 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 S. 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

    Neah Bois, fellow, American Dream Ideas Challenge
    Myron Willson, deputy chief sustainability officer
    Ginger Cannon, active transportation manager
    Jonathon Bates, executive director, Real Estate Administration 
    Robin Burr, chief design and construction officer

Recap of the Jan. 30, 2018 Community Forum

New University President Named

The Utah State Board of Regents has selected Ruth V. Watkins as the 16th president of the University of Utah. Watkins is the first woman to lead the University of Utah — the state's oldest, largest and only Research 1 higher education institution — in its 168-year history. (Jerilyn S. McIntyre served as interim president of the U twice, for two months in 1991 and all of 1997.) Watkins will assume the position this spring — an exact date will be determined in the coming weeks. She succeeds David W. Pershing, who has served as president since 2012 and will officially step down to rejoin the U as a faculty member. Watch the highlights below or the full story can be found here.

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Chris Hill, director, Athletics

The baseball stadium expansion is on hold for the next few years. The Athletics Department is switching focus to the Rice-Eccles Stadium expansion. The south end zone is falling apart and needs to be replaced. Sound and traffic studies are in the planning phase and time will be needed to analyze the results once complete. Another reason is Athletics is trying to prevent "donor fatigue." They want Rice-Eccles Stadium to be funded before moving onto the baseball stadium. When that project resumes, the orientation will be rotated so the outfield is facing northeast from the current southeast footprint. The intention is to prevent as many foul balls from being hit to Guardsman Way. The principals of Roland Hall and Pingree have been consulted and feel positive about these changes. They are also working out agreements for parking in their lots during games. At this point, the VA Hospital has not been contacted for their input but they will be consulted moving forward. Especially, addressing concerns that were raised about the Valor House on the VA campus.

Jess Turuc, director, Fraternity and Sorority Life

Jess Turuc graduated from Michigan Technological University and worked with fraternities and sororities there as well an in Georgia and North Carolina before coming to the U in late May 2017. Turuc is working with campus organizations to host educational workshops that cover risk management, hazing, parties, and sexual assault. More so than was done in the past.

Greek system by the numbers:

  • 19 organizations
  • 1,515 student members
  • 6 percent of campus
  • 11 fraternities
  • 751 men
  • 8 sororities
  • 764 women
  • 13 organizations housed in the Federal Heights area

If you have questions or concerns regarding Greek organizations, contact Turuc at or 801-581-8061.

Alma Allred, director, Commuter Services

Commuter Services is pleased to announce the opening of the new TRAX-Union, electric shuttle route. This new route, closed to private vehicles, bisects campus from north to south and links the Business Loop roadway to the Union Building, providing faster service, roughly 15 minutes, between these two major campus hubs. The electric shuttle will operate on this route from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. every weekday and is carefully timed to arrive shortly after trains arrive at the South Campus Drive TRAX station. Traveling north, the shuttle will have three stops - the Arts & Education Building, Languages & Communication Building (LNCO), and finally, the Union before returning to TRAX.

Jonathon Bates, executive director, Real Estate Administration

Research Park Solar Arrays
Three sites in Research Park have new solar arrays, a combination of ground, rooftop, and parking canopy, totaling nearly 2.5 megawatts that are now live. This power purchase agreement allowed the U to purchase these arrays at zero out of pocket costs and fixed rates fort the 25-year term, after which ownership reverts to the U. Power savings for each site: 729 Arapeen, 52 percent from ground, rooftop and parking canopy, 383 Colorow, 40 percent from rooftop and parking canopy, 295 Chipeta, 17 percent from rooftop array.

Research Park Vision & Design Study
In 2018, Research Park is turning 50 years old and consideration must be made now to update the antiquated 1970s master plan. For the past two semesters, Research Park has partnered with a graduate class called a "studio" with students from architecture, city planning, urban design, ecological planning, and real estate development. The following areas are being analyzed as part of the project:

  • Housing
  • Social services
  • Retail and dining options
  • Recreation and playscapes
  • Transit circulator
  • New research facilities
  • Reconfigured parking

The studio will provide project, innovation and process deliverables along the way. Salt Lake City has been involved in the project and will continue to be a partner in the future. After the class is complete, their recommendations will be used in tandem with a request for proposal process to hire a firm to form and create the new master plan that will take Research Park into the next 50 years.

Research Park Vision & Design Studio Open House
Thursday, April 12, 2018, 6 – 9 p.m.

Students will present research, case studies and present visioning alternatives that could be incorporated into the Research Park master plan.

College of Architecture + Planning – In the Bailey
Parking available in the Utah Museum of Fine Arts Visitor Lot, look for signage.

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

Repaving will begin in May on three sides of the campus. The project will begin with North campus drive at the Kennecott building moving up to the hospital until complete. The next phase will be Mario Capecchi and South Campus Drive simultaneously. UDOT has been working 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 play fields. 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 have 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.

On Wasatch Drive a new parking lot with a capacity of 710 stalls will be terraced into the hillside by the Eccles Broadcast Center.

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 will begin in November 2017 and the first bid package has been released, which includes the demolition and the beginning of relocations 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+ year building. Programing is expected to begin in February 2018, as soon as the strategic piece has been completed. 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.

Coming to completion in the beginning of April, the new Alumni House is a stunning building with plenty of rental spaces for parties and events. Additional space is required to serve the growing alumni - 265,000 worldwide - with building upgrades to the existing aging facility needed due to seismic, energy, and code issues. This project will cost $10.5 million. Construction began in fall 2016 and will be complete for fall 2017. This space will also be available for community use and can accommodate larger events and expanded meeting space. EDA Architects and Zwick Construction are working on this project.

April 20, 2018
1 - 4 p.m.
155 Central Campus Drive.
Open to all members of the community.