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Master Plan sets University’s future

Gabriela Krupa
Staff Writer

Imagine the University of La Verne with new buildings and technology – new classrooms, a bigger gym, more food stations, additional parking and restored dorms.

ULV officials created the Master Plan to help generate designs, facilities and technologies that will support the growing academic population of the University.

“Our goal is to create a Master Plan that will support the 2020 Strategic Vision by supporting the physical aspect of it,” said Franco Brown, associate senior project designer for sustainable design architecture firm LPA Inc. and lead planner for the Master Plan.

“The Campus Master Plan is a document that shapes the changes and growth of the University,” said Chip West, assistant vice president of capital planning and space management.

University President Devorah Liebe­rman said the 2020 Strategic Vision is a plan to help guide the University on what needs to be accomplished by year 2020.

West said the 2020 Strategic Vision is the backbone for the Master Plan.

“We will use data gathered from students, residents and faculty to create planning concepts to help ULV grow smart,” Brown said. The suggestions provided will help the firm create a Master Plan for ULV to complete by 2030.

Brown encouraged residents, students and faculty to join the Master Plan planning sessions, which allowed an open forum for suggestions that can affect the University of La Verne in the future.

The sessions were important for LPA to analyze because it communicated data patterns, which help the University have smart growth, Brown said.

“After the activity, it was reassuring to know that others had the same ideas,” Jennifer Wheeler, a sophomore communications major who participated in a session, said.

She said that it would be nice if the University did similar workshops every semester so students can communicate their opinions.

“Everyone brings their own insight, and we need different perspectives,” Lieberman said. “We would not need to ask if we were not going to take these suggestions seriously,” West said.

Lieberman said residents around the community should also have an opportunity to be heard because anything that ULV does affects the city.

“We have had over 1,000 students, residents and board members come and input opinions on the University,” Lieberman said.

The groups in the master planning sessions were offered a hands-on experience to express their thoughts. LPA provided a campus map with icons to place around the properties owned by ULV. Participants were able to locate different or difficult uses on the campus, such as parking, housing and land use.

Although the Master Plan’s primary focus is the main campus, Brown asked people to look beyond the main campus and take Campus West, campus parks and the A-street parking lot into consideration. He said the open forum allows people to contribute their dreams, needs and ideas. Lieberman said that she wants to stay true to what makes the University special.

Ariane Lebrilla, LPA planner and architect major at Cal Poly Pomona, said one of the biggest challenges is how to connect the two campuses, if they should be connected. “Students need to decide if they want both campuses connected or completely separate,” Brown said.

They are encouraged to examine the relationship between Campus West, located past the shuttle lot, and the main campus.

“We have never done so many sessions at one school before,” Lebrilla said. LPA has helped other universities, such as Cal Poly Pomona and Cal State Northridge, take smart steps toward a better campus. Cal Poly Pomona is building their new recreational center based on a plan by LPA, and the Cal State Northridge Student Recreation Center was designed by LPA.

“I was in three sessions myself and it was fascinating, fun and inspiring to see the different ideas for the University,” Lieberman said.

“Our next step is to present a Master Plan by December 2014,” West said.

People are encouraged to take a survey at laverne.edu/masterplan/surveys.

Gabriela Krupa can be reached at gabriela.krupa@laverne.edu.

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  5. Faculty center gets new name, sets new focus

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