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Thread: University/college campus planning

  1. #1
    Cyburbian prana's avatar
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    University/college campus planning

    Looking for some general information and trends in university and campus planning. Specifically for universities in an urban environment with about 15,000-30,000 students. Are there trends related to green design, new housing options, emphasis on open space, or anything else pertenant?

    I'm not sure what else to ask, but hopefully your answers will spur more questions and topics in my head. Thanks.
    "You can measure the health of a city by the vitality and energy of its streets and public open spaces.”-- William H. Whyte..

  2. #2
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    old fart alert...

    I worked in campus planning many moons ago (88-91) in the private sector for a firm that specialized in campus planning and design - it's a lot of fun

    there are al ot of textbooks on campus planning - I got to work on one once -

    I think the whole reducing carbon footprints is huge yes for colleges, in part due to students of today demanding it as part of their decision making criteria -

    in the town where I work, the local college is the top green school in the country (and the top 10 for food, so I love having meetings in their cafeteria)

    even years back, open space was a big part of the planning process - when I was working on siting a new building the first question I asked the students was "where's your beach" - though shalt not locate a chemistry building the "the beach"

    housing options definitely are trending to graduate housing for older returning students as well as housing options for faculty as many universities are in high end locations and thus their young post-grad's and professors have a real hard time living near the school

  3. #3
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Sustainability is the new hip thing for campus planning. There's a lot of emphasis on creating open spaces within the campus. Also, another big trend is doing mixed use buildings--retail/restaurant on first floor with academic facilities within and above. Universities are also moving away from the landlord business, letting the private sector build apartments nearby rather than providing additional university housing.

    If you would like to read an example of a recent campus plan, you might give Texas State University's plan a read (26,000 at time of adoption and 29,000 today).

    http://www.vpfss.txstate.edu/cmp/

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Greenescapist's avatar
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    I do a lot of work in campus planning as a consultant. As Suburb Repairman said, the great emphasis is on sustainability. Among many things- universities are increasing their TDM programs to reduce auto trip traffic, building on or eliminating planned surface parking lots, increasing green space for it's environmental and social benefits, and pledging to construct new buidlings as LEED certified structures with all their inherent energy/water efficiencies.

    Several universities I've worked with are building new dorms to get more students on campus to help settle student behavior problems in off-campus neighborhoods. The dorms they are building today are much fancier than what I had- fewer students per room, private bathrooms, and better recreation facilities. This has impacts on campus land use and housing in adjacent areas.

    Campus planning is a very broad topic- it depends a lot on the mission of the school, the environment it's in, and what the impetus for planning is- growth, government pressure, etc.

  5. #5
    This topic is of interest to me. I think there are a whole lot of schools out there who are now "going green". There are big pushes for recycling, re-use, decrease in carbon footprints, water conservation, alternative fuels for campus buses, for example, etc. I think there are also now, or soon will be, LEED-certified buildings being constructed in college campuses. Sustainability seems to be a major, if not the major, trend.

  6. #6
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by julkins08 View post
    This topic is of interest to me. I think there are a whole lot of schools out there who are now "going green". There are big pushes for recycling, re-use, decrease in carbon footprints, water conservation, alternative fuels for campus buses, for example, etc. I think there are also now, or soon will be, LEED-certified buildings being constructed in college campuses. Sustainability seems to be a major, if not the major, trend.
    Texas State is doing a new 600-bed residence hall that will be LEED silver. It would have been gold, but they would not vary the red tile roof architectural standard for a cool roof or green roof. Still an achievement though.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Planit's avatar
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    Sustainability/Green Bldg/LEED are the big issues for most campuses now - even using a building as a living laboratory to test theories and examine long term results.

    Another trend is the creation of "Learning Neighborhoods" where a dorm is located in close proxinity to an academic building. The students living in that dorm have declared that major which is taught in that particular academic building and therefore create their community/neighborhood of like minded people. This makes it easier to share ideas and work on late night projects in the safe proximity to your classroom.
    "Whatever beer I'm drinking, is better than the one I'm not." DMLW
    "Budweiser sells a product they reflectively insist on calling beer." John Oliver

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    Cyburbian Big Owl's avatar
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    UNC-Charlotte is under going the process to create a new plan now. One of the press release mentioned UW-Madison plan as a model for UNC-C's new plan. UW-Madison mentions the current trends in it's plan. Here is a link....

    http://www.uc.wisc.edu/masterplan/

    and here is a link to some information from Society for College and University Planning.

    http://fsuspc.fsu.edu/media/trends_in_higher_educ.pdf

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Big Owl's avatar
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    UNC-Charlotte is under going the process to create a new plan now. One of the press release mentioned UW-Madison plan as a model for UNC-C's new plan. UW-Madison mentions the current trends in it's plan. Here is a link....

    http://www.uc.wisc.edu/masterplan/

    and here is a link to some information from Society for College and University Planning.

    http://fsuspc.fsu.edu/media/trends_in_higher_educ.pdf

  10. #10
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    I just toured the Vermont Law School in Randolph and they have "gone green" - it's amazing, really, what they have done...

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