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Master plan crosses street

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;Aiming to ‘protect the front door’ University officials will continue to purchase off-campus property as the opportunities arise, even if that means expanding more of campus south of East Wooster Street.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’The primary thing is purchasing anything south of Wooster allows the University to have complete control of the image of BGSU,’ said James McArthur, director of University architecture in the department of design and construction.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;Keeping the campus open with a pedestrian feel are key, said Bob Waddle, assistant vice president in the department of capital planning.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’As we continue to develop campus, our intent is to academically support [it],’ he said. ‘We’re looking to protect our front door, and it gives us some options.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’The most recent University property purchase is a warehouse located in the business park, behind Meijer, that was acquired over the summer, according to Waddle.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’We’ve been in need of additional warehouse space,’ he said. ‘We are looking to move our inventory management people from the technology building and then have it renovated.’The existing location for storage is the Park Avenue Warehouse, located on the north side of campus.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’A lot of our long term storage stuff will be there [the new location] as well as the general delivery stuff will go there,’ Waddle said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;Other additions to campus in recent years include the Wooster Center, a former church on Wooster across from Rodgers residence hall, is now being used by the Chapman Learning Community.’It’s being used to handle some office needs,’ Waddle said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;The former church was purchased one and a half years ago and the parking lot beside it was made into a commuter lot almost immediately, Waddle said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;In addition, the department of institutional research was also moved across Wooster to a red brick building, across from Founders residence hall.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’It really just needed to be carpeted and painted,’ Waddle said. ‘A lot of other properties we are looking at are not configured as such to use as office space.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’Moving the Institutional Research department has been an achievement, Waddle said, as the department does ‘the most computer intensive research on campus.’

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’It was important to make sure they were connected to the campus infrastructure,’ he said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;Other buildings currently off-campus south of Wooster include the Department of Popular Culture, the WBGU TV station, the Social and Philosophy Policy Center, the Guest House and Greek houses, as well as several parking lots.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;While there are no further purchases in the works as of now, the University will continue to acquire property south of Wooster as time and funding allows, Waddle said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’In some ways it’s very important for us,’ he said. ‘In the past there were opportunities to purchase property and we now see how valuable they are. We feel it’s never going to be cheaper than it is today.’

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;Waddle says that University staff hope to improve the appearance of future acquired properties.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’A lot of the houses have turned into rental units and we’re not happy with the landlords,’ he said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;If purchased, such properties may be used to house visiting scholars and faculty, Waddle said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’We’re looking to lease those houses,’ he said. ‘They will come in handy for visiting scholars and new faculty.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’Waddle cites the current construction on Thurstin and last summer on Wooster as a means to expand campus if needed in the future.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’It at least allowed us to put in conduits so in the future if we want to make infrastructure technology over there we can do so,’ he said. ‘It’s a way to protect our fiber optic lines.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’Many of the purchases will tie into the campus master plan, according to Waddle.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’With the campus master plan we really want to open things up to campus,’ he said. ‘Looking at certain things and based on certain priorities we’re doing what makes common sense.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’Completed in July 2004, the Campus Master Plan entails what the campus is projected to look like over the next 15 to 30 years.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;The previous campus master plan was done in 1965 and had since become outdated.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’For the first master plan we did 80 percent of what it was before it lost its vitality,’ McArthur said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;Most purchases will be limited to south of Wooster or west of Thurstin, according to Waddle.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’On the north side we are restricted to a degree because of the airport,’ he said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;The Campus Master Plan gives a prospective look at what changes might be made to the campus in the future, McArthur said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’The master plan looks at the guidelines and principles of what the campus will be, similar to a small city, where things will be built and how they will be controlled,’ he said. ‘It basically give us a general road map of where we might go and what the campus development might produce.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’The plan may change in the future but having some guidelines in place is key, McArthur said.

‘#160;’#160;’#160;’#160;’It’s important to have a direction to move in,’ he said.

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