Inside the Facilities Master Planning Process
Lance Bolton, Ph.D., February 16, 2012
Pikes Peak Community College winds down a Facility Planning process that has occupied members of our student body, faculty, staff and administration for more than seven months. Within the next month or so, all PPCC employees will be invited to participate in public forums where the plan will be shown and explained. Many folks have questions about the plan, and I thought it helpful to provide some information about what the plan does and does not address.
In the plan
The plan addresses the overall space needs of our college with those needs broken into broad segments such as classroom, laboratory, office, student study areas, and so forth. It analyzes our current space capabilities and measures those by comparing square footage assigned to those areas with norms and formulas for an ideal campus based primarily on student numbers. A college with X number of student credit hours being offered should offer Y square footage of laboratory space, for example.
This analysis allows us to compare our campus facilities to national norms and ideal campuses nationwide. It helps our college understand where our most critical shortages of functional space are found. In addition, the plan also develops some possible capital project solutions to address our space needs.
The potential solutions to our space needs are recommendations about how to add space to our existing facilities; they do not represent detailed plans of possible construction. The construction options include possible building sites and designs, but not the allocation of space within those designs. Further, it will be helpful to know that developing funding options for constructing the proposed new facilities is not within the scope of work for our Facility Planning Team.
Not in the plan
We do not expect the plan to make detailed suggestions for reallocating existing space. Further, we do not expect the plan to detail possible movement, trading, or other changes in existing office, classroom, laboratory, or recreational space. The Facility Planners believe that ultimately PPCC is best equipped to wrestle with decisions about the allocation of space within our existing facilities.
It is my intention to use all available PPCC facility space to its highest and best use. We do have early stage plans to make some changes that we hope and believe can help us better serve our students. However, there are still many unresolved issues to address regarding these plans. My pledge is to fully inform the campus of our intentions as soon as possible.