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Past Explorations for Future Developments

Over the years FAU has commissioned studies, solicited renderings and plotted out space for future facilities. Now, things rarely go as planned because of funding issues, changes in student and faculty needs, or someone like the Toppel family shows up and donates $3M to build the (eventual) Toppel Early Education Center. As a result, the university's development is very dynamic and it can feel at times like we've all got a different idea of how FAU should be.

Of course at the end of the day it's University Architect Tom Donaudy or President Saunders who get the final say on what is being where and when. Still, I thought it would be interesting to look at some ideas that the university has yet to implement - and may not, who knows - but at least it gives you an idea of what they've been thinking about.

As mentioned yesterday (and several times before), FAU will be building Parking Garage 3 and the next phase of the Innovation Village on the north end of campus, just west of the stadium. It will eat into the Preserve, despite the presence of the Tortuga Trail, angry biologists and various wildlife. It's just an inevitability. The "good" news is that the university is planning a "trade": once the Innovation Village build-out is complete, the plan is to eliminate Lot 5 and "return it to the wild." If that idea holds up then that space will all become preserve again, which in a way is good because it consolidates people into the campus core so no one has to park way out there and complain about how far they have to walk around the stadium to get to class.

Speaking of green space, it is part of the Landscaping Master Plan (I'll give you the link but trust me, nothing to see there that I'm not already showing you here) to keep the "Campus Green" as "the image and place-making landscape icon for the Campus. The Campus Green shall be the formal and ceremonial open space which is sacrosanct and inviolate."  (Picture below is from the above link)


Hopefully you recognize the Spaceship (SO) building on the right side there and thus can place the others. This plan has more or less been accomplished with the exception of the row of oaks and the Carillon.

Don't know what a Carillon is? I didn't either. Know what a belltower is? Exactly.

The Cook Carillon Tower at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan. Gotta admit they did a pretty awesome job. Thanks Wikipedia.

Now, we may have nixed that idea since we put in fake bells at the PA building. But uh, yeah, we could do better. And there's still space! If you uproot the tree/bush planting in the very heart of Alumni Plaza, you could still put a Carillon there. Then again, the Alumni Center probably wants their Lighthouse thing to be the dominant "tower" on campus, so... there's that. I guess we could build a bigger Lighthouse? Because budget considerations trimmed it down from its original height and glory anyway...

Whatever. They'll sort it out. Let's move on.

Once the College of Engineering moves over entirely into the new Engineering building (which it doesn't look like they've done yet), then the "service yard" where they work on watercraft is due to get an auditorium expansion in preparation for redoing the space as General Classroom Space (as we talked about before).

See, I told you. The red arrow never lies. Also, I added the red arrow.

The existing Administration building will probably become the new Student Union (although I talked to someone at the SU who said she didn't know about that but she heard they were thinking about renovating the existing Union by adding a second floor to the Live Oak and a building out by the outdoor fields. Not sure how I feel about this).

Let's say the renovation doesn't happen and instead we change the old Admin into the new SU. once you do that, you create a major interface point for public transit. The LRTP 2030 (Long-Range Transportation Plan) plan shows an "Intermodal Center" at the Admin building loop there, which presumably then links up with proposed Rapid Bus Transit (RBT) that goes east-west on Glades (as we talked about previously).

You can read about Miami's very cool (and very expensive) forthcoming Intermodal Center here but don't think for one second that we'd qualify for the same thing. As cool as it would be to even have something like this on campus we're probably just going to have a large covered structure outside the Student Union that allows people to get on and off buses and shuttles. And that's all FAU needs, even if it balloons out to 50-60k students two or three decades from now.

I really love the lighting in that photo though. Looks futuristic. That we could afford.

GO OWLS!

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