A proposal to add 82,000 square feet of academic and alumni space at the proposed on-campus stadium was approved Friday by the CSU System Board of Governors at its annual meeting at CSU’s Mountain Campus.
The addition, which will cost $18.5 million, is the result of cross-campus collaboration that included input from faculty, staff and students. CSU President Tony Frank made the initial proposal at the BOG’s May meeting after a group of nearly 50 campus representatives came to collective consensus that a stadium build-out should be considered.
Once the BOG approved that motion, faculty, staff and student groups met to determine the best uses for the additional space. After considering numerous options, the group came to a consensus on what the addition should include. The proposal was presented Friday to the BOG.
“I’m happy that we were able to pull the different groups together and that faculty, staff and students were included in the conversation,” said Mary Stromberger, chair of CSU’s Faculty Council.”The process worked well, and could be a model process for engaging employees in future decision-making.”
The addition will allow CSU’s Center for Advising and Student Achievement (CASA) to move to a single, centralized location on the stadium’s northeast side. It will also house a much-needed Alumni Center, study spaces and eight flipped classrooms of various sizes.
“The new academic space in the stadium will give us a chance to re-unite the different units of CASA in one convenient location, enabling us to provide better advising services to all of our students,” said Rick Miranda, CSU’s provost. “It will also free up space in the TILT building and in Aylesworth for other important offices to move to more central locations; we are considering options here now, which may include RDS and others.”
New home for CASA
CASA, which provides counseling for thousands of students each year, currently is split between the TILT building and Aylesworth. Moving to one location would better serve students and raise awareness of CASA’s varied services, and would allow Resources for Disabled Students (RDS) to occupy CASA’s current space at TILT.
“Finally, connecting our alumni back to the core of campus with the new Alumni Center space will be a major step forward, one that has been desired for many years,” said Miranda.
CSU has been seeking a new Alumni Center for more than a decade. The Alumni Center currently is housed in a university-owned home on the east side of campus and is minimally adequate to serve the Alumni Association’s needs.
Connecting with alumni
Among the stated goals of the new stadium is to reconnect alumni with campus. The new Alumni Center will include a large hall, community event spaces, executive meeting space and offices.
Kristi Bohlender, incoming executive director of the Alumni Association, described the center as “one of the premier, state-of-the-art alumni centers in the country.”
Site preparation for construction on the stadium project has begun and is expected to be completed by the start of the 2017-18 academic year.