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UConn 2000 sequencing to change

by Karen A. Grava - July 21, 2008

The Board of Trustees recently approved changes in the sequencing of projects within the UConn 2000 program.

These measures will accommodate changing research priorities; bring the building program in line with the academic plan; and allow more time for planning large projects such as the Torrey Life Sciences Building.

The UConn 2000 legislation gives the University authority to sequence projects and determine project scope and budgets.

Named projects, those enumerated in the legislation, can only be added or deleted with legislative approval, and each year the University must administer the program within the annual bond caps set in the legislation.

The revised sequencing includes delaying the start of the Life Sciences project until 2011 to allow for more comprehensive planning, says Lorraine Aronson, chief financial officer.

The scope of that project is very large and requires maximum flexibility for planning.

Also, UConn is now planning for the replacement buildings for Monteith and Arjona, another very large project.

Scheduling the two large projects one after the other rather than simultaneously will allow for better management.

Delaying the Life Sciences project will enable the University to undertake a number of smaller projects sooner than anticipated.

“Now some of the older, historic buildings such as Beach Hall, Family Studies, and Manchester Hall, can be renovated at the same time that we upgrade them for code compliance,” Aronson says.

The revised plan, made with input from the Buildings and Grounds Committee, the president, and the provost, also permits allocation this year of $3 million for planning the new student recreational center.

The center will be funded primarily through fees and through a significant private fund-raising campaign but, Aronson says the planning funds are important to determine the scope of the project, its location, and its cost.

Other changes include moving equipment funds from the capital to the operating budget, to maximize UConn 2000 funds for facility projects, and was accomplished by reallocating and restructuring the operating budget, Aronson says.

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