Manhattan College is looking to continue the momentum gained by the success of the Kelly Commons by shifting its focus to the development of south campus.
Andrew Ryan, the vice president for facilities, recently presented the campus master plan during a senate meeting in the student commons. Ryan highlighted the projects and proposals that will have a great impact on the future of the college.
“The biggest part of the master plan is the STEM building and the associated renovations of Leo, Hayden and RLC,” Ryan said.
STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) departments have been working closely with a team of consultants to analyze what needs the new 30,000-square-foot building must fulfill. Classroom utilization, projected program growth and interdisciplinary interaction are major factors being put into consideration.
Along with deciding what should be put into the new facility, the study also has to address what to do with existing spaces on campus.
“Do they stay the way they are? Do they get renovated? Do they relocate? These are all concerns that have to be taken care of,” Ryan said.
At the conclusion of the STEM study, which should be around June, the college will dive right into the design process. Barring any major mishaps, the same architect who is conducting the study will do design.
“We’ll wake up in September of 2020 and the new building will be here,” Ryan said.
Another major change in store for south campus is the addition of a new housing building, which plans to provide approximately 300 beds in apartment-style living.
“We want to provide more housing for our upperclassmen to transition to, like Overlook but brand spanking new,” Richard Satterlee, vice president for student life, said.
The decision for apartment-style living, as opposed to traditional or modified-suite living such as Jasper or Horan Hall, was largely influenced by student preference.
In conjunction with Campus Apartments, Residence Life formed student focus groups to receive commentary and feedback on housing design.
“One of the reasons we did not want to move off and design a new housing unit is that we wanted student input,” Satterlee said. “Student input is critical.”
The current master plan shows the residence hall being built where the physical plant is presently located. This is convenient for the college, since MC already owns the property, but it also means that physical plant would need to relocate.
The project does not have a definitive timeline, but Ryan predicts the building will be underway in 2019.
While these changes are not immediate, anticipation is already building.
“I hope it is carrying a lot of excitement with people,” Satterlee said, “These are spaces that will wow students.”