Board of Trustees approves property exchange to build architecture building

Madeline Winer

The Kent State Board of Trustees approved a property exchange for the Delta Upsilon KSU Alumni Chapter house in order to make space for the new College of Architecture and Environmental Design at its meeting Wednesday in the Kent State Hotel and Conference Center.

The DU house, located at 202 S. Lincoln St., was appraised at $440,000. The Delta Upsilon fraternity will be will be moved to 1061 Fraternity Circle appraised at $550,000. The fraternity will pay the university the difference of the exchange at $110,000.

“We’ve been engaged in conversations with the DU folks for a couple years now. They see this as a great opportunity to move to Fraternity Circle,” President Lester Lefton said. “We see it as a good opportunity to expand the scope of the Esplanade, so this is a win-win.”

Lefton said the transaction will take six to eight months to be finalized. The Fraternity Circle location is currently home to the Kent State University Foundation under the division of institutional advancement.

A lease-back agreement will allow the Foundation staff to stay in the building until a new building is constructed to house the entirety of the university’s division of Institutional Advancement, said Gene Finn, vice president of institutional advancement.

Greg Floyd, senior vice president of finance and administration, said the university is looking at the old DuBois bookstore building located at the intersection of South Lincoln and Summit streets to house the division of institutional advancement. The university is currently leasing the building through the Portage County Port Authority.

“Obviously, there is an alumni function that goes in with it. It is a well-defined location and on the edge of campus connected with the hotel here. It makes a lot of sense,” said Finn about the possible location of his offices in the DuBois property. “Hopefully the connection with the hotel will be a welcome for the alumni.”

Finn said the building is planned to be a 30,000 square foot facility.

“We’re working diligently to get it all together,” Floyd said. “We hope to bring it before the board [for] approval in December.”

Wednesday’s board meeting was the first in Kent State’s new Hotel and Conference Center, which will be dedicated during homecoming weekend on Oct. 4. The board chose not to hold a press conference after Wednesday’s meeting. The board also discussed and ruled on the following actions:

  • A review of the 15-day enrollment statistics that showed Kent State’s smartest and largest freshman class with an average GPA of 3.3 and a size of 4,314 students. President Lefton reviewed the enrollment statistics with the board that included a jump in international and AALANA enrollment.
  • The board adopted uniform standards for assessing the readiness of new students to take college classes without remedial coursework. Provost Todd Diacon said the standards, which would add two general math classes that need approval by the faculty senate, would be implemented in the fall of 2014.
  • The board ratified the Finance and Administration’ action taken at its committee meeting Aug. 27 to approve the construction of a new home for Kent State’s College of Applied Engineering, Sustainability and Technology.
  • The board merged the department of epidemiology and biostatistics and the department of environmental health sciences in the college of public health.

Contact Madeleine Winer at [email protected].