Background and Scope
In 2002 the University undertook a comprehensive master plan which was approved by the Board of Trustees in 2004. That comprehensive work engaged representatives from across all facets of the campus and the town. The plan depicted a 20-year planning horizon and included broad programming for all campus entities and their projected space needs. It demonstrated feasibility including transportation and traffic analysis, landscape master planning, building design guidelines, and identification of all anticipated new and renovation projects prioritized into 4 phases.
The 2004 Campus Master Plan continues to be a sound foundation in its observations, principles, goals, and design guidelines and since that time, many of the projects identified have been completed. The condition of the campus clearly reflects the positive impacts of the planning effort. The dynamic nature of our campus and our educational mission now require the university to review and consider adjustments to the 2004 Plan. These 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 sturdy, but worn 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.