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Master Plan maps out campus' future

Engineering Day participants and robots
An artist's rendering of a possible corner entrance to campus instead of Plattekil Parking Lot. Image submitted

After eight months of work, the Campus Facilities Master Planning Task Force is unveiling the preliminary results of a comprehensive, 15-year Site and Landscape Master Plan for the college.

John Shupe, assistant vice president for Facilities Management and co-chair of the task force, said that the master plan is a comprehensive set of guidelines for campus growth that details a strategy to enhance the existing positive elements and in some cases redefines the campus.

"We are looking forward to a long-term vision for SUNY New Paltz," said Shupe. "This is a conceptual plan to help direct us for the next 15 years. The details will be worked out during the design phase for each project outlined in the plan."

The task force first presented the draft plan to the Academic Senate on Feb. 8 and will present it again to the campus community at a meeting for all classified staff on Feb. 29, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Lecture Center Room 108, and at a special faculty meeting from 2 to 4 p.m. in Lecture Center Room 102. Faculty will have another opportunity to comment on the presentation on March 14 at the regular faculty meeting. Stella Deen (English), co-chair of the task force, said that campus-wide feedback is welcomed during this time and will be incorporated into the final report before it is given to the president for approval.

Comments and questions can be submitted before March 24 to Deen at deenm@newpaltz.edu.

future view of campus
The Mohonk Walk (seen here in an artist's rendering) would replace the Resnick Parking Lot with a brick pathway lined with trees and benches. To the left is Wooster Science Building and to the right is Old Main. Image submitted

The task force, which was created in May 2007, is comprised of academic and professional faculty, administrators, students and a SUNY Construction Fund representative.

Throughout the course of the meetings, the task force met with architects from Ehrenkrantz Ekstut and Kuhn (EEK) of New York City to discuss goals and principles of the plan that will steer the campus layout, both building design and landscape elements.

Sean O'Donnell, a principal architect from EEK, who outlined the plan to the Academic Senate, said that the plan suggests future growth and development be based on the "great DNA of the campus." Among the task force's recommendations are: 1) providing a notable and distinct "first impression" and defining a campus edge; 2) providing safer pedestrian and vehicular crossings along Route 32; 3) improving parking efficiency, access and location while maintaining adequate close-in parking; and 4) minimizing pedestrian, vehicular and service conflicts.

The plan will be available for viewing in my.newpaltz.edu after the Feb. 29 meeting.