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Campus Improvement Projects

East Campus

BOND ISSUE APPROVED: A Higher Education General Obligation bond issue that included nearly $7.8 million for RIC was passed by over 62% of the vote on November 7, 2006. If the state permits use of the bond funds in FY08, construction of East Campus improvement projects can begin in the summer of 2007.

SHERLOCK CENTER ON DISABILITIES/BUILDING 7: The State Building Commission has approved plans for the renovation and expansion of Building 7 to become the new home of the Sherlock Center on Disabilities, whose programs and personnel are now scattered among five buildings on campus. Additions to the building will increase the square footage to 11,342 and a parking lot will be constructed to accommodate approximately 80 vehicles. Plans include one electronic classroom to
be used primarily for training purposes, as well as one electronic conference room. Architect for the project is Robinson Green Beretta. Once begun, construction is estimated to take from 9-11 months.

BUILDING 3: Plans for reconstruction of Building 3 have been updated. Project architect is Vision III Associates. The building will feature two electronic classrooms, a café, and will serve as the new home of the Office of Student Financial Aid. The renovated building will consist of approximately 9,385 square feet of space. Once begun,
construction is estimated to take from 9-11 months.

ADDITIONAL EAST CAMPUS PROJECTS UNDER THE 2006 BOND ISSUE: Bond funding is also earmarked for renovations to Building 2 and for East Campus safety, roadway, and landscaping improvements. Planning for these projects will await the start of the Building 7 and 3 projects.

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics (STEM)

As a result of a recommendation made by the Governor’s Blue Ribbon Panel on Mathematics & Science Education, which made its report in the fall of 2005, the State of Rhode Island has embarked on a multi-year program aimed at upgrading the teaching of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in Rhode Island schools.

Rhode Island College has been slated to receive some $4.5 million from this initiative for laboratory and classroom enhancements over a four-year period. This investment would be supplemented by some $664,000 in College funds over the project period, primarily from anticipated asset protection funds. In addition, a 2006 Champlin Grant of $228,300 has been awarded to assist in this effort.

The project calls for the upgrading of 17 classrooms and laboratories located in five separate buildings. The first phase of the program will target College classrooms located on the second floor of the Henry Barnard School. Later renovations will be made to classrooms in Clarke Science, Fogarty Life Science, Gaige Hall, and Horace Mann Hall.

Asset Protection/Other Campus Projects

  • GENDER NEUTRAL RESTROOMS: Approximately forty single-occupancy restrooms located throughout campus, heretofore assigned by gender but in practice often used irrespective of gender, are to become officially gender neutral in the spring semester. These converted units address concerns about gender imbalance and gender identity in the availability of restroom facilities. Each converted unit will be ADA compliant and provide a family friendly facility for occasions when the gender of a parent differs from that of a child. A list of the locations of these restrooms will be publicized when the conversions are complete and the appropriate signage is installed.

Future Projects

  • Art Center: Within its FY 2008-2012 Capital Improvement Plan, the Board of Governors has approved an extensive renovation and addition project to provide adequate space and facilities for programs of the Art Department. The plan envisions new classrooms; studios for printmaking, metals, ceramics, photography, sculpture, and other programs; faculty offices; workshop areas; slide library; photography lab; computer lab; and multipurpose presentation areas. The project is currently estimated to cost just over $10.5 million and anticipates a future funding request through a general obligation bond issue.
  • Cottage C (“YELLOW COTTAGE”): With the completion of renovations to the exterior of Cottage C on the East Campus in the fall of fall 2006, attention now turns to the obtaining of funding for renovation of the interior of the historic building.
  • Infrastructure Modernization: Within its FY 2008-2012 Capital Improvement Plan, the Board of Governors has approved a proposal to modernize and replace significant portions of the aging underground utility infrastructure of the campus, the construction of which began over 50 years ago and – on the East Campus as well as in structures along Fruit Hill Avenue – decades earlier. The objective is to replace, modernize, and expand capacity (where necessary and appropriate) of steam lines, drinking water supply, electrical service, and other utilities. The multi-year cost of this proposal is just over $7.9 million, with the majority of funding slated to be requested through a future general obligation bond issue.
  • Modernization & Rehabilitation of Academic Buildings: Within its FY 2008-2012 Capital Improvement Plan, the Board of Governors has approved a phased four-year modernization and rehabilitation of four major academic buildings: Adams Library (built 1963/expanded 1978), Craig-Lee Hall (built 1958/expanded 1971), Clarke Science (built 1962), and the Henry Barnard School (built 1958). Depending on the specific needs of each of the buildings, the project may entail such improvements as installation of energy-efficient windows and/or window/wall units; upgrade and modernization of elevators; upgrade and modernization of restrooms; enhancement of classrooms, corridors, and staff offices by replacement of lighting, ceiling tiles, and floor surfaces; removal of asbestos tiles; and exterior power washing and sealing of brick and slate walls. The project is currently estimated to cost just over $15.3 million and anticipates a future funding request through a general obligation bond issue.

Parking, Circulation, & Roadway Improvements (“Master Plan”):

Within its FY 2008-2012 Capital Improvement Plan, the Board of Governors has approved a proposal to complete the multi-year program of safety and capacity improvements recommended by the College’s Master Plan. In addition to the upgrade, expansion, and improvement of parking, traffic flow, and signage, this project includes construction of a third campus entrance off Fruit Hill Avenue on property previously acquired through the Rhode Island College Foundation in the vicinity of Hennessey 14 Avenue. This would enhance safety and relieve vehicular congestion both for on-campus traffic well as for non-College-related traffic utilizing Fruit Hill Avenue. It would also permit the closing of existing sight-line deficient driveways now servicing College Receiving and other smaller College buildings on the western end of the campus.

The current proposal estimates that the multiple projects called for in this proposal will cost just over $7.4 million. It is proposed that RI Capital Funds be the source of most of the funding.

Recreation Center: Plans are being made to modernize and renovate the Recreation Center, including the portion of the facility that that was originally constructed in 1953 as a school for the residents of the former Children’s Center that was then located on the East Campus. A feasibility study will be undertaken to determine the cost of financing the construction. If plans for modernization and renovation are feasible, the College will seek revenue bond financing through the Rhode Island Health and Educational Building Corporation (RIHEBC). All funds secured through RIHEBC would be repaid through user fees and not College funds.

Campus Buildings Cited for Architectural Excellence

  • Alger Hall: William Kite Architects, Inc., project architect for the Alger Hall reconstruction that was completed in 2005, was awarded the prestigious 2006 American Institute of Architects (AIA-RI) Merit Award in both the Educational/Institutional category and the Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse/Renovation category for its innovative building design.
  • School of Social Work/Building 9: William Kite Architects, Inc., project architect for the reconstruction of Building 9 on the East Campus that was completed in 2004, was awarded the prestigious 2006 American Institute of Architects (AIA-RI) Merit Award in both the Educational/Institutional category and the Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse/Renovation category for its innovative building design.

Congratulations to William Kite Architects on the recognition of their work.

Page last updated: September 12, 2011