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Board of Regents Approves Revised Five-Year Capital Construction Plan

The CU-Boulder Visual Arts Complex
The CU-Boulder Visual Arts Complex
The University of Colorado Board of Regents approved the revised five-year capital construction plan for building projects across CU's campuses, even though there is no state money to fund the buildings.

Even so, establishing priorities and submitting a list to the state will ensure CU's place in line if funds do become available, and the plan also prioritizes projects to position the university to pursue funding avenues other than state money, such as federal stimulus money and cash funds. State statute requires the university to submit a list to the Colorado Commission on Higher Education (CCHE) for review.

"We know it's unlikely that we will receive state capital construction money any time soon, but it's still important for us to establish our priorities and aggressively seek alternative funding sources," said Kelly Fox, vice president and chief financial officer.

Part of the plan includes the university's $99 million capital construction request for fiscal year 2010-11. CU is required to submit plans to the CCHE a year in advance so the governing body can review them before forwarding to the Legislature's Capital Construction Committee.

The top priority for CU is the Systems Biotechnology Building on the Boulder campus. The $179.8 million facility, to be built on the East Campus, will be home to three programs: the Colorado Initiative in Molecular Biotechnology, the Biochemistry Division in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering.

The plan calls for building three of four planned wings, with the fourth deferred until state funds become available. A combination of $148 million in cash and federal money will allow the first three wings to be built. CU has applied for federal stimulus money to finance part of the project. Initial occupancy is scheduled for fall 2011.

The process of setting building priorities across the university happens through discussions among the president, chancellors and chief financial officers.

Second on the priority list is the $29.1 million South Hall Classroom addition at the Colorado Springs campus. The $42 million School of Architecture on the Denver campus is third. The rest of the projects on the priority list are:

4 - Ekeley Middle Wing renovation (CU-Boulder), $15.7 million
5 - Ketchum Arts and Sciences capital renewal (CU-Boulder), $13.5 million
6 - Visual and Performing Arts (UCCS), $47.2 million
7 - Aerospace and Energy Systems Building (CU-Boulder), $46.1 million
8 - Hellems capital renewal (CU-Boulder), $26.4 million
9 - Geosciences Building (CU-Boulder), $60.8

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