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Guiding Principles for Space Management of Academic and Research Space on West Campus

August 14, 2014

For purposes of this document, “space” shall refer to all academic and research space falling under the purview of the Provost and Senior Vice-President for Academic Affairs. The following are guiding principles which underpin space management efforts.

1. Space is a University resource.

The physical facilities of the University are an enormous asset, crucial to the operations of the campus. The number, type, and condition of University spaces support campus programs and activities.

2. Space is a University property to be allocated in a manner which best advances University priorities.

No one unit, department, or division "owns" space. University space resources should be deployed in the most efficient and effective manner to best serve programmatic and strategic goals.

3. Space can and will be reassigned.

The University values flexibility and recognizes changing curricula, programs, and technologies. Space assignments will change to achieve optimal utilization and respond to current and emerging needs.

4. Space needs will be evaluated using quantitative and functional considerations.

The following types of information will be used to provide contextual information to gauge relative space needs:

  • Space standards employed by the State University Construction Fund where building architecture and construction conditions allow.
  • Personnel levels and student enrollments.
  • Discipline specific space needs for research, teaching, etc.
  • External funding levels.
  • Requirements to comply with federal and state regulations.

Historical assignment of space will not be considered as a valid argument for space retention.

5. Responsibility for assignment and reassignment of space will follow divisional and departmental organizational hierarchies.

While any and all space assignments are subject to change based on the authority of the Provost, the ability to assign and reassign space is generally delegated to Dean or Director of the units reporting to Provost, i.e. schools/colleges or institutes. The Dean will generally delegate the authority to assign and reassign to department chairs and center/institute directors reporting to them.

This authority, which is contingent on compliance with applicable space guidelines and standards, is expected to provide flexibility to deans, chairs and directors to address the space needs within their respective units.

Space reassignments between units will be developed through prior communication and consultation between all stakeholders, i.e. the units to which and from which space is reassigned as well as the master unit to which these units report 1 .

It will be the responsibility of the lowest level subunits to update and maintain the university space data base through appropriate input of data and communication with the office of Capital Planning.

6. Spaces shall be allocated and assigned under the following general parameters, exceptions to which require approval by the Provost.

With the exception of discipline specific learning spaces and laboratories, all learning spacesshall be assigned to the registrar 2 . If a classroom is located within the assigned space of a unit, the Registrar may share space assignment with a unit. The parameters of such assignment shall be recorded in a memo. In these cases the Registrar is considered as the primary assignee.

Space assignments will endeavor to maintain adjacencies between department faculty, scholarly programs, and related administrative units where building architecture, scheduling and financing allow.

Space shall be generally allocated and reassigned based on activity in accordance with established space type guidelines, where building architecture and construction conditions allow.

Any use of space by third parties must occur under, and be governed by, the University’s revocable permit process as defined in policy P517.

7. Funding needs for space rehabs and occupancy changes shall be the responsibility of the unit to which the space is assigned.

Space alternations (rehabs) must follow all university and state procedures and regulations as defined in policy P618.

For funding purposes all moves are considered to take place within a single unit. Thus, when space is reassigned between two units, it is considered to take place within the master unit to which both units report. The responsibility for arranging the necessary funds for rehabs and occupancy changes shall ultimately be the responsibility of the master unit; it is expected that the master unit will negotiate with the units to implement a “pusher pays” system of funding.

Critical maintenance of space as well as alterations needed to ensure code compliance are outside of the scope of space alteration discussed here. If such alterations are required in the context of space reassignments the funding is not the responsibility of the master unit.

8. Assignment and reassignment of space for Centers and Institutes follows the principles outlined above.

The assignment of space within each Center or Institute is generally delegated to its director, while the responsibility for space assignment/reassignment to a Center or Institute follows the reporting structure and thus could be with a department chair, a Dean, the Provost or the President. Centers and Institutes outside of the University reporting structure are considered a third party and require a revocable permit.

1 For reassignments between two departments within the same school/college, the master unit is the Office of the Dean of the respective school/college. For reassignments between two departments within different schools/colleges, the master unit is the Office of the Provost.

2 Learning spaces do not include conference rooms or other spaces that are occasionally used for teaching, but have other primary functions.


Download this policy in PDF format here.