Administration looks to upgrade aging facilities
Founded in 1968, MVNU celebrates 48 years of academic and spiritual growth this year. Students, faculty and staff are proud of this history and the many years of experience embedded into campus. However, MVNU is showing its age.
Walking through campus, many students are aware of the contrast between newer buildings like Ariel Arena or Jetter School of Business and older buildings like Faculty/Regents or Founders.
From the design, layout and overall appearance, the stark difference is hard to ignore. MVNU administrators have recognized the surface and structural needs of many of the aging buildings.
Senior Director of Facilities Operations Denny Taylor said they are evaluating the needs of each individual building and brainstorming the most effective way to fulfill them. No decisions about upgrades have been made, but facilities staff and administrators are in conversation about the problem.
According to Taylor, every building remains functional and practical for students to learn and grow, so immediate action is not necessary. Facilities staff currently remain on top of the repairs and maintenance for each building to prolong its life and value.
Residential buildings, especially the Cedar apartments, also are showing wear. Tim Radcliffe, interim co-dean of students, expects a decision about the future of Cedar will be reached in the next five years.
According to Radcliffe, this decision will depend on enrollment in the coming years. If numbers continue to climb, it may become necessary to replace Cedar with a new model.
But if enrollment drops, it may be simpler to phase Cedar out. Right now, Cedar is an important part of campus that houses many male and female undergraduates.
“We dream of something along the lines of Redwood, a suite-style residence area that encourages community space,” Radcliffe said. “Apartments make that difficult.”
University officials will be looking at how other schools have handled similar situations in order to make the best decision, Radcliffe said. However, nothing is “solid, on the books or planned for the next few years.”