Site chosen for location of new Davies Center
Chancellor Brian Levin-Stankevich decided on the location for the new Davies Center last Tuesday, saying it will go behind the current student union between McIntyre Library and the School of Nursing Building.
“Having the building set off by green space leading up to it and having the little Niagara seemed really appealing to me,” Levin-Stankevich said. He feels this site keeps more green space than the other option by Zorn Arena, and is more aesthetically pleasing. While it is further from the river than the other location, he thinks the views of Putnam Park and of Little Niagara are just as pleasing.
Other key factors involved in deciding site location were truck accessibility to Davies, proximity to upper campus, the library and the flood plain.
“It does kind of create . a straight line right into the main mall area and then down towards the library and the student union,” Levin-Stankevich said about the desirable location and how it’s more centrally located on campus than the other site.
Student Senate President Tim Lauer is pleased with Levin-Stankevich’s decision.
“I’m in full support of it,” he said. “It provides a much more open space and it’s a great location right next to the little Niagara.”
Lauer also thinks it’s well located between the residence halls and the rest of campus and likes how it will open up the green space in front of the soon-to-be student center.
When asked about the effectiveness of student involvement, Levin-Stankevich said he greatly appreciated all of the concerns and input he received from students.
“I was much more predisposed to look at the site next to Zorn, but I think a lot of questions got raised,” he said. “Being able to step back and look at it more objectively . I think that dialogue was very helpful.”
Levin-Stankevich anticipates the new education building will be built in the space next to Zorn and construction for that should start shortly after the completion of the new Davies Center.
During one of the student discussions, some students raised conconcerns of what would happen to the current Davies.
“The administration has been very clear that they want the current Davies taken down immediately after and we assume that that’s what’s going to happen,” Lauer said.
Although the administration wants Davies demolished, Lauer sees the possible need for it to be used for swing space during construction of the education building.
Lauer thinks there is a misinterpretation with the selected site and parking limitations.
“Earlier it was brought up in an open forum with senate that there were problems with parking,” Lauer said. “Parking will be an issue, but I think it can be overcome. There’s good solutions.”
Several students expressed concern that part of Putnam Park could be turned into parking, but Levin-Stankevich doesn’t see this as a possible solution to the parking issue.
Lauer is on the committee making the decisions with the new building and though they are in the infancy of the process, the committee is glad to have one part completed.
“I think everyone is happy with the site selection,” Lauer said. “Both sites were amendable. I think it’s exciting to have the student union in such a beautiful location.”