A-Senate: New space committee to advise on renovations, use of existing land

A new space committee will now advise President George Ross and other committees on how to utilize the 5.5 million square feet on Central Michigan University's campus. 

Ross said he charged the committee with reviewing and assessing whether the existing space usage is being optimized. They will also be making recommendations on future development of the space. 

"I've had people say we need more teaching space," Ross told the Academic Senate at Tuesday's meeting. "We are adding two new women's sports in athletics, and I know there was an issue where those coaches will sit." 

The space committee is comprised of two faculty members and eight senior officers. There are no students on the committee. 

Some A-Senators voiced objection with how few faculty members were on the committee. Joseph Finck, a physics professor, asked Ross why there are only two faculty members on the committee. 

Ross said he tried to make a committee of people who are familiar with the campus in more than just classroom space. He said he felt the members came from a variety of places on campus. 

"We have challenges grappling the space at CMU," he said. "We're squeezed on space. I tried to populate the committee with people who have a knowledge of the current space."

Ross said he wants the committee members to think about the university as a whole and not just from their department's or college's view. 

"I want them to take the politics out of it and look across all five and a half million square feet on this campus and help guide in making the decision," he said. 

The committee will also help advise the Budget Priorities Committee on what renovations are necessary and what new space on campus can be built.