What you need to know about the proposed health center expansion

The University Housing department proposed expansions and renovations to the University Health Center at a Board of Trustees meeting last month. The project will be approved or denied once the budget for the renovation is finalized and reviewed by the Board. The budget, anticipated to be between $17.8 and $19.2 million, is scheduled to be finalized in April.

The student population has grown significantly since the last Health Center remodel in 2007 and now the center is failing to meet the needs of students, according to Michael Griffel, director of university housing. The student population has grown by over 2,000 students since 2007, reaching nearly 23,000 in fall 2017. He said students are also using the health center services more than they were before.

The objectives of the remodel include increasing the amount of space in the center to accommodate the amount of students who use the health center. It’s also in anticipation for the student population’s future growth.

The proposal includes constructing a 22,500 square foot addition to the health center, as well as renovating 11,000 square feet of the existing structure to improve confidentiality, expand services and update deferred maintenance on the building. According to Griffel, they plan to break ground in June of 2018 and complete the renovation and addition by fall 2019.

“There just isn’t capacity in the current facility. We don’t have enough clinical space,” Griffel said. The proposed renovations include updating the heating, ventilation and air conditioning as well.

The renderings of the building show a large, L-shaped addition to the health center. Griffel said the building is expected to be “quite attractive.”

Griffel said they are still working on how best to conduct business in the Health Center during the renovations. One of the ideas now is to construct the addition first and move operations into it while the existing structure is renovated.

The Health Center’s last update in 2007 cost $10 million and created new procedure and treatment rooms and added 10,000 square feet to the center.

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Hannah Kanik

Hannah Kanik

Hannah Kanik is a News Reporter. She is a sophomore majoring in Journalism and Political Science and loves coffee and classic movies.