The Cornerstone serves as the gateway to an emerging innovation district that will further link the university with the city of Lexington. The project is scheduled to be completed in fall 2020. The Cornerstone property will allow UK to provide much-needed additional parking capacity on the north side of campus, by expanding the existing parking structure at Limestone and Upper Streets to include more than 900 new spaces. These additional parking spaces will further improve mobility and access to, from, and around campus for our students, faculty, staff, and visitors.
The ground floor of The Cornerstone will consist of 23,000 square feet of mixed-use space to further enhance the north side of UK's campus. Plans call for a flexible, technology-rich innovation space with a variety of programming to stimulate conversation and collaboration between students, faculty, staff, and the community. This innovation hub will anchor UK's role at the intersection of creativity, technology, entrepreneurship, and economic development.
Other features of The Cornerstone include a gamers’ lounge, a multiuse 100-seat theater that can host esports tournaments, hold classes, and be the home for a myriad of other events, and the Exchange, a food hall with shared seating to create additional opportunity to build community and collaboration. This space will bring together local favorites such as Rolling Oven, A Cup of Common Wealth, and West Sixth Brewing. A multi-story external media wall will enhance the university’s smart-campus efforts and provide messaging important to the UK Campus and The Cornerstone.
As part of strategic efforts to leverage technology to maximize student success and build community, the University of Kentucky has entered into a partnership with the global Esports company Gen.G to build a first-of-its-kind global gaming and Esports program. The collaboration is being jointly led by two UK offices: Student and Academic Life and Information Technology Services.
The partnership was developed through UK's multimedia rights holder JMI Sports. It promises strategically distinctive steps beyond Esports as purely a competitive platform by focusing on student, community, and professional development.