Campus master plan designs presented

President Eli Capilouto, left, speaks with Greg Havens, Sasaki planner, about one of the proposed plans for campus at the Master Plan Open House at Bio-Pharm Atrium in Lexington, Ky., on Monday, Feb. 4, 2013. This particular plan calls for a redevelopment of campus and possibly the demolition of certain historic buildings on campus. Photo by Morgan Eads | Staff

By Morgan Eads

UK employees, students and community members were in attendance for an open house Monday that explored possible options for the future of UK’s campus.

Representatives from Sasaki Associates Inc., the company tasked with planning UK’s facelift, spoke with members of the UK and Lexington communities about proposed changes to campus.

Urban planner with Sasaki Associates Inc. Greg Havens said a large number of variables have to be considered in the redesigning of areas on campus.

“We are mainly focusing on housing, but with that comes a host of things,” Havens said.

These factors have come to light in a series of meetings with campus officials and open forums with students and campus employees where the company has tried to find the “pulse” of campus, Havens said.

“Basically, we focus on a lot of different things,” Havens said. “It’s a process of listening and identifying recurring themes.”

Pedestrian accessibility, a relative lack of social spaces, a need for better dining and a call for more student gathering spots were all issues to crop up multiple times throughout the company’s data collection process.

At the open house multiple maps and illustrations were available to show tentative ideas and plans developed from this data.

“This is a composition of all variables of building a campus,” Havens said.

Several plans were presented at the open house including one calling for considerable redevelopment.

Well known UK buildings such as Funkhouser and Kirwan and Blanding towers were mentioned as possible structures to be done away with in this plan.

“Some of the sites of historical buildings here may be more valuable if used for other purposes,” Havens said.

How students and community members move around campus could change as well according to some plans shown at the open house.

“We’re looking at mobility, we want to make campus more pedestrianized,” Havens said. “We’re looking at possibly having no vehicle traffic on Hilltop and more restricted