In the near future, students’ green might be going toward making the area around the Culp greener.
Vice President of Student Affairs Joe Sherlin, Associate Vice President of Facilities Bill Rasnick and Chief of Staff External Operations Jeremy Ross spoke during a Student Government Association meeting on providing more green area from the D.P. Culp Center to John Robert Ball Drive.
“One element of the renovation project that we’re excited about is to connect the Culp to a larger green space, and ultimately to the football stadium through a large plaza,” Sherlin said.
Ross presented photos of drawings and plans that gave detail on where the green space would extend.
“Green space is a part of the university experience, and over the last decade we have looked at outdoor spaces at various times with the eventuality of having a Harvard yard or a lawn,” Ross said. “These areas we already have are a part of a journey.”
A $1 million budget has already been pre-approved, whether it will be used for this project or for something else pertaining to the Culp Center.
The additional space will not require an increase of student fees, as the budget will come from the existing renovation budget; students will continue to pay the $145 fee that was set last year for renovations.
“This concept was not a part of the original plan–it was a part of the master plan, but not an original concept that we talked about with a Culp renovation,” Rasnick said. “Over the last several weeks or months, we have talked to TBR about adding it to the project, and just this afternoon they are supporting the concept.”
Sen. Garrett Parks raised concern about parking decreasing, but there has been discussion with parking services to construct a second parking garage on campus.
Vice President Ryan Baird felt that parking areas should be on the outskirts of campus rather than internal.
“I’m not sure about anyone else, but I would enjoy walking to class with grass and nature all around me rather than a whole lot of concrete,” Baird said.
A few senators praised the concept for creativity and felt that it would bring more appeal to campus for potential students, especially during campus tours.
“If we’re going to put all of this money into renovating this space and the Culp, I think the road leading up to it should be renovated as well in order for everything to flow together well,” Sen. Tessa Branham said. “I love the idea of the partial green space, partial keeping the road.”
Ross said the road after the extended green space would allow a path to the new football stadium.
“My observation is people walk all around from the CPA, through the residence halls, to the student center,” Ross said. “I think it will be a very vibrant, unique space where we could have tailgating and fun events that will be special to students on campus.”