Master Plan Home

General Issues

Academic/Instruction Issues

Community Issues

Enrollment Issues

Student Issues

Faculty and Staff Issues

Technology Issues

Research Issues

Facilities Issues/Campus Infrastructure & Support Issues

Parking and Circulation Issues

Student Housing Issues

Sports and Recreation Issues

Academic Planning Matrix

UNC Research Matrix

Planning Assumptions

To define the necessary physical properties, we must understand the programmatic vision. This is based in part on the University Plan and UNC's missions and goals. Other, more refined, issues were also developed to complete the programmatic picture of the campus. These issues, or planning assumptions, were developed by a planning committee made up of representatives of the University of Northern Colorado. The assumptions help establish better definition to the academic and other goals of the institution.

The following assumptions provide further definition of the programmatic issues the master plan is based upon.

General Issues

  • The University is a Research Intensive Institution.

Academic/Instruction Issues

  • Currently, the 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday - Friday instruction period is the most desirable for teaching undergraduate courses. The University will expand this traditional time frame into the evenings and possibly Saturdays in order to better utilize its facilities.
  • The traditional 50-minute lecture is likely to make way to a larger "block" of time for instruction periods. This block of time may be different per program and is dependent on the different styles of teaching.
  • On campus use of technology will also be expanded. Many, if not all programs, will require students to have computers when enrolled. The University will likely make software and hardware available to students for lease similar to books or other materials. Classrooms and labs will be designed to support the flexible use of computers by all students.
  • The University will not require students to take required courses during the summer, however, more required courses will be offered during the summer both on and off campus, to improve scheduling options and reduce the average time it takes for a student to graduate. This also improves the utilization of facilities during the summer.
  • General assignment classrooms and instructional labs should be located in areas that are in close proximity to student residence halls and/or easily accessible to all faculty and students.
  • Regardless of size and configuration, new classroom environments must be flexible to accommodate various teaching methods. This includes the physical layouts of these spaces as well as furniture, equipment, technologies, atmosphere, etc. Instruction methods and delivery, etc. Instruction methods and delivery will change even during a single block of time. Flexibility is essential.
  • There will be higher percentages of web-based instruction in the future. The University projects up to 25% of its credit hour production could be web based within the next twenty years. The Continuing Education market will decrease as web-based instruction increases.
  • Improved flexibility in instruction, particularly in graduate programs, will change as undergraduate demographics change. Classes may be supplemented with various types of instruction. New innovated ways of instructing are being explored on a daily basis, and will have a direct impact on the campus environment.
  • One-third of the students at UNC are commuters. The University may start to see change if community demographics indicate Greeley moving from a bedroom to a corporate community. Delivery will change as traditional resident student population decreases.
  • Wireless technology and instructional delivery will create change. Tiered classrooms are being changed to provide more interaction between faculty and students (flexible seating, more technology).
  • Changes made in state government structure and technology will determine changes in what is a class, what is a term.
  • Additional "team" rooms will be needed as teaching becomes more interactive.
  • All spaces, even social spaces will require access to technology, primarily data ports, power, and worldwide web applications. This vision will go beyond the "internet cafes" seen nation wide.
  • Today's students are coming to campus with a technology rich background. The University understands the importance of providing a technology rich environment to further improve the students experience and use of new technologies. Students can not come to a campus that is not at least equivalent to the technological capabilities they were raised with in the primary and secondary schools, and with in their own home. The University must be leaders and cutting edge in this area
  • There is a false assumption that technology based education decreases faculty. Although ratios may change, additional faculty and staff will be needed to support enrollment growths, even if there may be an increased percentage of students taking web-based courses.
  • Technology will impact what office space looks like on the campus for faculty. Technology not only changes what the classroom looks like but other space on campus also. Resources are a concern and the university may have to look at innovative partnerships, etc. for funding.
  • The University understands the potential to be more cooperative between institutions in Colorado. Like Libraries, and material storage programs, University's and Colleges may share degree programs, faculty, and other resources especially along the Front Range. This may have a major impact on facilities at each school.
  • A matrix was developed to describe the many academic variables that impact facilities planning and master planning. The matrix describes a variety of scenarios that can be tested to depict a future vision for the campus. As the academia continues to define its future, the variables can be updated to reflect the vision the University has adopted. This matrix also is used to develop the variables that are incorporated into the space planning model. It outlines possible changes in the way we currently do business. The matrix is included at the end of this section
  • The primary objectives/goals are:
    • Flexibility
    • Multipurpose (both in facilities and programs)

Community Issues

  • The University and its community have a strong partnership. It is extremely important to both parties to continue cooperative practices while also exploring additional ways to improve business relationships. The University plays a leadership role in the Greeley community and prides itself on the positive role it plays.
  • There are alot of residential units that are rental properties immediately adjacent to university property. Because of this, the University plays an active role with the city in developing appropriate land use and property use ordinances. Many persons in these areas are students and the University feels it can help the city "take responsibility of its students" and their actions within the nearby community. UNC plays an active role and continually cooperates with courts, police, city officials, city departments, and other agencies.
  • Erosion of property maintenance around campus is an issue. The City of Greeley has begun an education program for students to find best places to rent. The City and University have opportunities for landlords to become involved in programs to help avoid problems.
  • The city does a multi-family housing study annually. This study is included in the University's planning processes when considering its role within the community to provide student housing.
  • The University Center has an off-campus student housing office and a web site.
  • Many students are moving to the western edge of Greeley. This will result in the need for alternative modes of transportation and additional parking on campus. The City of Greeley promotes private developers and the University to do what they can in providing ample student housing near campus
  • More students are coming to UNC with cars. Although it will continue to explore potential solutions, it doesn't seem possible in the near future to convince students not to bring cars to campus. UNC has contracted with the City for shuttle services between campuses. This has been very successful, averaging 1,250 riders per day. There doesn't seem to be a need for other routes such as to the downtown area or the mall at this time, but will be considered in the future.
  • The University wants to continually increase the use of alternative modes of transportation. Bicycle use plays a major role in this at UNC. The university recently completed a long range bicycle plan in cooperation with the City of Greeley. The Ninth Avenue corridor may become a bike or shuttle route. Bike use is increasing steadily, and will be an important element in the circulation system within the environment.
  • There is a lack of student support and service type businesses near campus. University Square and Hillside Mall, located just south of the west campus, is meeting some of the student's needs, but both the community and the campus support increasing the opportunities for private developers to provide additional stores and social spots.
  • UNC is a focal point for visitors coming to Greeley. The City is working on design plans for better entry ways (Hwy 34 west to 11th Ave., up to 25th St.). UNC is a major destination in Greeley.
  • One or a major community issue is safety. The City supports the University's desire to improve the connection between the Central and West Campus. The City continually cooperates with the University through federal grant applications to improve pedestrian and vehicular access to, from, and within the University.

Enrollment Issues

  • UNC has created an enrollment plan that is outlined in the Reference Information section specific to Enrollment Planning. It is included  in the University's Academic Plan. It was created as a strategy for direction in enrollment planning. Although the plan projects or contemplates an increase in enrollment the admissions standards will go up as well, so the quality of the average student at the university will increase.
  • The enrollment plan is built on the enrollment of 15,000 students on campus and 5,000 off-campus. The off-campus students are really students getting degrees or credit hours without having to attend campus. Thus, 75% of the student enrollment will be students who would need to use campus facilities. 15,000 is the number we are going to use for discussion purposes even though there will be facilities issues related to supporting the other 5,000.
  • The 15,000 is considered an optimal maximum, not a plan that ends up being increased later. What this cap is meant to do is to maintain a number that the University feels is possible to maintain today's character of the University, to keep the small faculty/staff ratios, and keep the close knit community in mind. The most important factor isn't the increased number of students but the University's priorities to increase the mix of students (increased number of minority students, international students and graduate students).
  • The University wants the Graduate School to grow and become a higher percentage of the total enrollment.
  • The enrollment plan is not necessarily time related, it is not a 5 or 10 year figure. It is considered the desired maximum size.
  • Because the University projects as high as 25% of its credit hour production could be web based, the number (or frequency) of students coming to campus will not grow as rapidly as on-site FTE. This will have a positive impact on space needs as the campus grows.
  • The highest percentage of additional 5,000 off-campus students are going to be in web-based instruction and less site-based distance learning. The web-base allows students to access information over the web, regardless of location.
  • The College of Business projects there will be an increase the number of Professional Development courses.
  • Some prior planning has been done on a per program basis. Enrollments per program were reviewed and it was determined which programs would have high, medium and low growth trends. This may be beneficial in the future, but the discussion focus was on determining a larger scale, not per program. Enrollments on a college-wide scale were discussed.
  • Arts and Sciences enrollments and credit hour production is drastically impacted with any changes in enrollment. The College produces a large percentage of base courses that supports all college degrees. One example is Arts and Sciences probably produces 2/3 of the credit hours needed for the College of Education and the College of Education produces only 1/3.
  • Other areas that may increase due to increased emphasis on graduate education are Health & Human Sciences and Education.
  • The doctorate programs that exist now must be maintained at the current level. The University is now considered a research intensive institution as opposed to a research extensive institution. UNC petitioned to be a research intensive institution because of the focused nature of its graduate programs.
  • Considerations for new degrees are in the applied fields, applied technology and applied allied health fields. These may be new programs because of where society is going and could grow substantially. These could be new programs in the enrollment plan for the master plan.
  • Other considerations include the concept of an inverted degree program. This would allow students to have a two year degree to come to the University and get a four year degree without having to take general education courses over again.

Student Issues

  • Students feel there should be additional space on campus for student functions, general gathering, computer areas, and recreation.
  • Consideration should be given to the relationship of the Central and West Campus. They are currently too segregated.

Faculty and Staff Issues

  • The University will require additional faculty for undergraduate instructional purposes. The size of core tenured faculty will decrease in the future as a total percentage of faculty on campus. This is because the University intends to hire adjunct faculty, visiting scholars, practitioners, irrespective of the size of the institution. A future percent of tenured track faculty may likely be as follows:
    • Currently—80% tenured faculty, 20% contract
    • Near Future—75% tenured faculty, 25% contract
    • 15,000 FTE—65% tenured faculty, 35% contract
  • The University will need to provide additional and higher quality research space to meet the needs of new and replacement tenure track faculty.
  • The Enrollment Management Committee projects faculty/student ratios not to change dramatically until the campus reaches an enrollment of approximately 15,000 headcount. It is anticipated most change will occur after this point in the university's growth. New ratios may look like the following:
    • Student - Faculty
    • 38/36 - 1, lower division
    • 20/21 - 1, upper division
    • 12 - 1, graduate
  • Faculty/student ratios might also change a with Web-Based Instruction. Although the Faculty might be able to teach more students at one time, support time goes up. Workload is substantially greater and a 20/25 - 1 ratio is possible.
  • Adjunct faculty will need access to computers, areas to meet with students.
  • There should be more flexibility in building facilities. Plan for more open spaces and less closed/private spaces in percentages. Goal is to move to lowered percentage.
  • There is an increasing demand for face-to-face meetings, causing a trend for more gathering spaces.
  • Technology will play a major role in the development of campus facilities. The quantity and type of space will shift in the future to support new teaching methodologies.
  • The office environment plays an important role in the atmosphere for the University's employees and their productivity. It is a desire to improve the quality of office spaces across the campus.
  • There is an effort to properly plan space for scholarly activity. The space model will incorporate a variable to project space for scholarly activity.

Technology Issues

  • Instructional spaces are becoming a major focus. Students are coming to campus with more devices and are more mobile. Students are more desirous of features such as video. UNC will have an issue with video storage in the future.
  • Biggest issues with technology are: bandwidth, access, and memory.
  • UNC prefers not to be leading edge when it comes to technology. The University tends to implement proven technology.
  • The University may consider requiring students to have lap-top computers when they come to campus in the future.
  • Voice is copper cable/direct buried and there is an issue with its age and condition. None of the phone system is fiber-based at this time. Capacity and quality/maintenance are also issues. Another issue is power in closets; distribution closets are not in place today.
  • Information Technology needs a central location for staff. Information Technology is significantly impacted because of no growth space right now, and prefers to be in one location.
  • Technology ages very quickly. Technology underground ages quickly also, would be helpful to have a way to replace more easily.

Research Issues

  • UNC has a combination of research grants and training grants with research components. Sponsored research will continue to be dominated by applied research with a human focus and a smaller, but significant complement of basic, non-human and theoretical research.
  • UNC goals include increasing faculty and student scholarly activities, including research. Space requirements will not be limited to traditional research space but include a wide range of scholarly endeavors.
  • New research activity will focus on programs of excellence or programs identified as having high potential or demand. Areas may include the applied fields, health, environmental, and teaching.
  • The University needs to provide, maintain, upgrade, and renovate research facilities to support its educational programs as well as be able to compete for federal and private grants. Short term utilization of space requires flexibility so spaces are not outlived in a short period of time. This will also allow for the dynamic changes in the research sector.
  • It is important to recognize the different focus of research at UNC. Research is more human focus research than animal research or a more traditional pure science research. Education related fields are the disciplines that are heavy into research.
  • A well-designed human performance lab needs to be available. Design and specifications should be according to potential users.
  • Research support areas, lab/staff/student space should be available upon receipt of internal or external funding support. The University will begin to program space for research or scholarly activity in any new buildings. This space will supplement the academic space required.
  • The research and scholarly activities at UNC are contingent upon the expertise of the faculty hired to support academic programs. Faculty and student scholarship determine space needs that are most dominant in the following areas:
    • Sciences and Science Education
    • Education, including Educational Technology
    • Social Science
    • Business
    • Arts & Humanities Creative Activities
    • Applied Health
  • There is a need to acknowledge programs that have graduate programs. NSF and Department of Education are requiring program context with stronger content.
  • Future research and scholarly activities will require increased multidisciplinary space. Some research space needs to be multi-use in nature to adapt to change and growth in research activities. There is an increasing need for space that doesn't belong to any particular program or person. Existing space may be converted or renovated to better serve as research centers, making them a place for people to come together. Some spaces need to be flexible, manipulative for some programs and controlled for others. Programs such as Education need more space, not specialized space.
  • UNC needs to accommodate faculty and graduate student research and scholarly activity space. Student space needs are a function of the number of graduate students in a department's programs and the amount and nature of scholarly work being conducted in the department and discipline. Departments with more sponsored research and scholarly programs will require more space for both faculty and graduate students. Undergraduate research involvement will be generally be as assistants and support staff and thus will require some additional research space.
  • A matrix to aid in the planning of research space was developed. It is included at the end of this section. It drives variables used in the space model.

Facilities Issues/Campus Infrastructure and Support Issues

  • The University will make every effort to utilize the most current technologies to improve and expand its delivery methods of instruction and information. The use of technology in supporting the delivery of instructional programs will increase dramatically, as a means to enrich delivery on-campus as well as to address access (distance delivered programs, both on and off campus). Today's physical constraints will soon become transparent.
  • Increasing the availability and quality of telecommunication and computer networking will be expanded. This includes all instructional, research, office, support, and student housing space.
  • Requirements for storage of hazardous materials will increase in complexity and necessary capacity. This storage should be on contiguous campus property at the periphery of the campus in a location as remote, but secure, as possible.
  • Academic and research programs space needs will take precedence within the campus center of both the Central and West Campus over other programs when there is limited space available on the main campus.
  • A priority will be established to upgrade the quality of existing structures. Build and maintain new space only as a last resort after a careful review of alternative options.
  • If enrollment grows to 15,000, broader use of contractors to supplement work crews would be necessary. Facility Operations does not do much outsourcing yet.
  • The major issues with utilities will occur if any new buildings are added. Utility expansion can be done in-place. The pipeline between the plant and campus needs to be up-sized. The University intends to do more landscaping and site beautification. This will impact landscape maintenance and operations services.
  • Utility issues revolve around both quality and quantity. Age and condition are an issue. Systems at capacity include heating, cooling, domestic water and waste/sewer. Heating Plant line to central campus is tight, link to west campus is ok. This is on the controlled maintenance request.
  • Architectural standards have been established The University intends to use landscaping and site features to improve campus aesthetics, help improve the collegiate atmosphere, and tie the Central and West Campus together from an urban design standpoint.
  • There will be a more expanded use of the facilities as the campus will be used more in the evenings and on weekends.
  • UNC has a Land Acquisition Plan. Newest University acquisition was Day Spring block (9th-10th Ave., 23rd-24th St.), this land is being leased to a developer for student housing. Only lands adjacent and contiguous to university properties are in this plan.
  • Building entrances need attention. The relationship between the site and the building lack connectivity. Building entrances need to be more identifiable to improve wayfinding.

Parking and Circulation Issues

  • To improve safety and the campus environment, the University will continue to be as pedestrian oriented as possible. General use motor vehicle circulation and parking should be concentrated towards the perimeter of both the central and West Campuses. Bicycle use and walking will take precedence in the central academic core.
  • Parking will be located at the periphery of the campus, along/outside the pedestrian areas.
  • The University will, in close coordination with the City of Greeley, promote the use of alternative mode transportation to reduce the number of single occupied autos being used to access campus. An improved bikeway system with additional facilities will play a major role as an alternative to the automobile.
  • The University will improve accessibility for the mobility, visual, and audio-impaired persons to and within each major facility. Service vehicles, emergency vehicles, and handicap persons will be provided access to all parts of the campus.
  • UNC issues 2.7 permits to one parking space for students but wants to bring that percentage down to even below the industry standard which is about 1.5 permits. This will require additional parking in the master plan.
  • UNC contracts with the City for a shuttle service from West Campus to Central Campus. The campus is trying to get students to only drive coming to and leaving campus, not within the campus.
  • If UNC changes to Professional Schools, general education will change on campus. This could affect where students will spend their time on campus and effect the parking needs
  • Some of the Parking changes may be driven by landscape or safety issues. The guiding principle is "not to pave paradise". Structures will be put on existing lots or on perimeter of campus.
  • Right now there are approximately 5,154 parking spaces on campus. Some service spaces will be lost on West Campus.
  • Circulation priority as being:
    1. pedestrian;
    2. bike;
    3. service vehicles; and
    4. public.
  • There should be limited access on service routes, possibly gates with card control. Service access should penetrate campus at perimeter locations - we should not consider "drives" through campus.
  • No significant changes are going to be made in land use.
  • The goal is to eliminate as much unnecessary signage as possible on campus. The City and the University want to identify when you enter the campus.
  • The goal is to better link the campuses.
  • An appropriate assumption that UNC is an internally focused campus.

Student Housing Issues

  • Freshman students will continue to be required to live in University residence halls. The University does not intend to build additional housing. If enrollments increase, the University will give priority to the freshmen until existing rooms are occupied. Upperclassmen will be accommodated off campus.
  • A partnership with the Greeley community is essential to improve availability of housing to all students.

Sports and Recreation Issues

  • The existing sports will continue to be supported by the University Athletic Program.
    • Men: Football, Basketball, Baseball, Golf, Tennis, Track & Field, Wrestling
    • Women: Cross-Country, Basketball, Soccer, Swimming, Volleyball, Track & Field, Tennis, Golf, Softball
    • Other: Cheerleaders
  • There are no immediate plans to add additional sport programs.
  • Athletics is considering moving from Division II to Division IAA. Current facilities don't support the current student population, and the current situation not only creates overcrowding but unsafe conditions.
  • Fields are used by Athletics, Recreation, Club Sports, Academic Community and Conference Services.
  • Due to Title IX there has recently been an increase in women's sports at UNC. Currently there are seven men's sports and nine women's sports. A civil rights study is being done at this time, findings could add additional women's sports.
  • If funding can be obtained, dedicated locker room space will be developed for each men's and women's sports program.
  • If the increase in enrollment to 15,000 includes a large increase in female students, more women's sports may need to be added.
  • If UNC would go to Division IAA would there be a need to add sports or improve existing sports. Planning should be done with the view that moving to Division IAA is a possibility.
  • The quality of the facilities contributes to the quality of the program.
  • Except for the new Wrestling gymnasium, there are no dedicated sports facilities at UNC. Besides the athletics program, facilities and fields are shared with Student Recreation. Student Recreation consists of three parts:
    • Intramurals - indoor and outdoor
    • Club Sports - indoor and outdoor
    • Recreation Center
  • Club Sport growth is increasing because of the spillover from Athletics. Some students want to compete at a higher level than intramural. There is national competition at the Club level now.
  • The limited number of lighted fields is a conflict. More use creates more maintenance costs. Lights would not eliminate all the conflicts with Athletics. There would be expanded opportunities with night programs.
  • UNC is at or above national levels with student recreation. As enrollment increases, additional recreation facilities will be planned to maintain the same level of space per student.
  • Recreation Center issues include:
    • Not enough space at certain times (open 6am - 10pm)
    • Peak use is 3-8pm, in weight/cardio vascular
    • Center is at capacity from 3-9:30 pm
    • Even with just drop-in there are people waiting to use facilities, worse when other programs are using. Meeting rooms are used at capacity.
    • There are routine weekly event and large demand for other functions.
    • There is a large demand for meeting rooms.
  • The numbers in the Greek System are decreasing in both men and women. The University is supportive of the system but does not foresee any growth.
  • The Recreation Center is currently limited to 200 members in the summer, 300 in the fall for faculty and staff. As the University enrollment grows and more faculty and staff are employed, additional memberships will need to increase at a rate consistent to today's memberships.
  • Conference Services will maximize existing facilities, not drive need for additional fields.
  • Space for programs such as Band, Pompom, Cheerleading, etc.) is necessary. Leisure activities on campus (UPC concerts, picnics) also need to be considered in space needs. If sport programs take green space for fields, this space goes away and these are important to the overall experience a student has when attending UNC.
  • Some club sports are becoming program driven, not enrollment driven. Club Sports are really in the middle of Recreation and Athletics.

Academic Planning Matrix

Scenario I -
ISSUE CURRENT PHASE I PHASE II MEASUREMENT/Comments
Year/Semester
yes/yes/no
yes/yes/no
yes/yes/no
Required Semesters - Fall/Spring/Summer
Week/Hours
40
42
45
# Hours per week considered to be
Students per FTE Faculty
19.7
20
22
Average number of faculty per student
% of Off Campus Credits
10%
15%
15%
Role of web-based instruction as percentage of total credit hours
Average Credits per Student
13.15
14
15
Credits per semester
% of Simulated Experience
10%
15%
20%
Amount of hands on experience necessary to complete degree
Tenure Faculty vs. Contract Employee
75%
70%
65%
Percentage full time vs. part time faculty
Classroom Description
5%
15%
25%
Percentage of Integrated spaces vs. traditional lecture
Laboratory Description
10%
20%
30%
Percentage of Integrated spaces
Other Space for Instruction
0%
5%
10%
Introduction of "new" space for instruction as a percent of current
Role of GTA/GRA
15%
17%
20%
Percent of instruction delivery
Faculty Development
5%
10%
20%
Percent of time used for Professional Development
% of Graduate/Undergraduate
16%
20%
25%
Total student body
Role as Commuter Campus/On Campus Housing
30%
25%
20%
Percent students living on campus
% of Field Time
5%
10%
20%
Percent of time faculty use in the field or hands on for instruction
Degree vs. Experience
5%
15%
25%
Percent of time required in the field vs classroom to obtain degree
Role of Industry/Partnerships
2%
5%
20%
Percent of active participation Industry plays in a students degree

 

UNC Research Matrix

  Graduate Assistant Space Laboratories/ Workrooms Collections/ Storage/ Equipment
Social Science Research # masters grad stu x .2 x 36 sq. ft. Fac. x 300 sq. ft. # depts. x 300 sq. ft.
# doc grad stu x .8 x 36 sq. ft.

Education Research # masters grad stu x .2 x 36 sq. ft. Fac. x 100 sq. ft. # depts. x 100 sq. ft.
# doc grad stu x .8 x 36 sq. ft.

Health Sciences Research # masters grad stu x .2 x 36 sq. ft. Fac. x 400 sq. ft. # depts. x 400 sq. ft.
# doc grad stu x .8 x 36 sq. ft.

Science and Science Educ. Research # masters grad stu x .2 x 36 sq. ft. Fac. x 400 sq. ft. # depts. x 400 sq. ft.
# doc grad stu x .8 x 36 sq. ft.

Arts & Humanities Research # masters grad stu x .2 x 36 sq. ft. Fac. x 400 sq. ft. # depts. x 600 sq. ft.
# doc grad stu x .8 x 36 sq. ft.

Other Research Space      
Res & Stat Consulting      
Sponsored Programs      
Independent Research Centers      
Technology Support Areas