The Kansas Board of Regents on Thursday unanimously adopted a formal recognition honoring Gov. Bill Graves and the Joint Building Commission of the Legislature for work on the state's Crumbling Classrooms initiative.
Statewide, the initial Crumbling Classrooms allocation for facilities improvements was more than $160 million.
Among the projects at Kansas University benefited by the Crumbling Classrooms initiative: an $11.3 million nursing facility at the Kansas University Medical Center, Kansas City, Kan.; improvements to 18 classrooms and laboratories at Malott Hall, with 15 more targeted for the summer; Americans with Disabilities Act improvements to Robinson Gymnasium; emergency lighting system installation in Green Hall and the Art and Design Building; a $14 million renovation to Joseph R. Pearson Hall; and a $9.7 million renovation to Murphy Hall.
Plans approved for gym
next to fieldhouse
Final plans and contract documents for an auxiliary gymnasium adjacent to Allen Fieldhouse were approved Thursday by regents.
The gym would provide practice space for men's and women's basketball programs and for competition volleyball. KU officials have identified a need for such a facility to diminish scheduling conflicts in the fieldhouse, and to provide practice and competition space for the volleyball program.
The $4 million project will provide a gym with seating for 1,600 spectators, and will be built with gifts given to the KU Endowment Association. Construction at the southwest edge of the fieldhouse is scheduled to begin this spring.
KUMC land gift
Regents on Thursday approved transfer of a gift of 3.071 acres from the University of Kansas Medical Center Research Institute Inc., to Kansas University.
The property, generally known as the Bell Recreation Center, is located at the corner of 36th Street and Rainbow Boulevard, Kansas City, Kan. The site will be used for construction of KUMC's new Center for Health in Aging facility.
The gymnasium portion of the building will be kept and incorporated into the new facility. The remainder, known to contain asbestos containing materials, will be razed.
KUMC vice chancellor
The vice chancellor of the Kansas University Medical Center, Kansas City, Kan., told regents Thursday that he still hoped to schedule the first meeting of KU Hospital's new public authority in July.
The authority, approved this year by the Legislature, will be a 14-member board. Eight members will be nominated for appointment by the governor.
``We're awaiting (Gov. Bill Graves') decision on board members,'' said Dr. Donald Hagen, KUMC vice chancellor. ``We're making progress as fast as we can.''
The KU chancellor, KUMC vice chancellor, deans of the nursing and medical schools, KU Hospital chief of staff and the hospital CEO would serve as automatic members. In addition, two legislators would serve on the board.
The legislation, signed by Graves in February, mandates that the transformation of the hospital's authority to a new public board must be complete by Dec. 31.
That includes modifying current operations with KU Medical Center police, legal services, libraries, accounting and payroll, landscaping services, and other functions.