The existing four story facility was originally built in 1963. In 1991, a three story classroom wing was added. The original building primarily houses office and administrative space while the 1991 addition houses nearly all the teaching/classroom space. The facility has been well maintained, but, as with most facilities of its age, some of the basic mechanical and electrical components have reached the end of their useful lives. None of the current classrooms support modern technology and the current structure of the facility allows only limited renovations or expansions of smaller classrooms. Further, the existing building's limited floor-to-floor heights will not allow classrooms to be outfitted with modern learning technology.
The University of Kentucky has long had this facility as a top request. Prior plans had suggested a completely new facility with estimated project costs of approximately $100 million. The university recognizes that the prior plan cannot be achieved given the public financing reality and is turning to private philanthropy for the project. To that end, the university took a fresh look at the existing facility and reviewed the feasibility and cost of a dramatic renovation and expansion to house modern classrooms, an auditorium, and student assembly spaces. The current concept is now estimated to cost $65 million.
- Increase capacity for enrollment and teaching
- Plan for 50% enrollment growth in Gatton College of Business and Economics.
- Plan for at least 50% growth in faculty and staff to meet enrollment growth and improve student: faculty ratio.
- Grow classroom capacity by at least 40% while increasing classroom utilization through more efficient scheduling and leveraging online learning technology.
- Create more community and student study spaces to facilitate modern learning methods and collaboration.
- Enhance identity and competiveness of the Gatton College.
- Meets demands of all academic programs.
- Meets future growth needs.
- Retains prime location at corner of Limestone and Administration Drive.
- Creates new 500 seat auditorium.
- Creates state-of-the-art high-tech classrooms with at least 20 instructional spaces with larger seat counts.
- Creates a new Executive Education and Conference Center to facilitate outreach and continuing education to the business, government, and non-profit communities.
- Dedicated MBA center accommodates enrollment growth and proposed joint Executive MBA with UL.
- LEED Silver/Gold Project.