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Capital Budget Testimony FY20 Request

I am pleased to provide testimony to the General Assembly for our FY 2020 capital budget request.  We greatly appreciate the General Assembly’s ongoing support of our capital requests, which is having a transformative impact on our campus and the state’s economy.  

Similarly, the two projects described in this testimony will significantly enhance the University’s research, education, and innovation capabilities. Much of the work in these new facilities will contribute to the state’s skilled workforce and its knowledge economy. 

As in previous projects, the cutting-edge research and education these buildings support may translate into new private sector and federal partnerships.  For example, the University is now a major innovation hub in fields such as quantum computing—greatly enhanced by the General Assembly’s previous capital support.  These new facilities will have a similar magnetic effect attracting talent and investment to spur innovation in the fields of energy, sustainability, health and philanthropy.

We are partners with the General Assembly in constructing the state’s future.  The University deeply appreciates all that your support makes possible.

The two projects are all the more critical because renovation needs and space shortages remain our greatest long-term programmatic and fiscal challenges.

Renovation Needs. We have an estimated need of $2.2 billion to renovate the 8.1 million GSF of state-supported buildings and the exterior infrastructure on our main campus. This includes $0.7 billion to renew failing building systems and meet current life safety and other building codes; $1.2 billion to modernize building systems and remodel/reconfigure space to meet current programmatic needs; and $0.3 billion to renew exterior infrastructure such as underground utilities, roads and sidewalks.  Based on a facilities audit conducted in 2015, 18 percent of the space in our major state-supported buildings was deemed in poor condition, 52 percent in fair condition and 30 percent in good condition.  We are addressing the spaces deemed in poor condition through a ten-year CIP and institutional facilities renewal plans.  Renovation and replacement of portions of the Chemistry Building, a facility that was deemed to be in poor condition, is one of the two projects we are requesting funding for this year.  In some notable cases we have lost major faculty because of sub-par conditions.

Space Shortages. Based on State formulas, we currently have a shortage of 1.6M NASF of state-supported space which is 28 percent of our existing inventory of about 5.6M NASF.  Roughly one half of this shortfall (0.8M NASF) is in research space.  These space shortages are very significant and of great concern.  Details regarding our space shortages are attached.

The projects recommended for funding this year are critically needed to help address both our space renewal and space shortage problems.  The projects will also help advance the State’s strategic goals for the economy and workforce, as well as the 55 percent college completion goal.


Download Capital Budget Testimony FY20 Request (PDF)

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