The University of California, Davis, will formally submit its new Long Range Development Plan and accompanying Environmental Impact Report for approval at the next meeting of the UC Regents, July 18. Once approved, the new plan, which includes capacity for an additional 2 million square feet of academic and administrative space and up to 9,050 beds of new on-campus housing, will go into effect.
“The new plan builds on the success of the 2003 LRDP and charts ambitious sustainability and housing options for UC Davis,” said Bob Segar, associate vice chancellor for campus planning and environmental stewardship.
Overall, under the new LRDP, on-campus student housing will increase from 9,818 students in the plan’s baseline year of 2016-17 to a forecast of housing 18,868 students by 2030. This projection greatly exceeds the 5,175 projected increase in student enrollment during the same period.
At the July 18 meeting, UC Davis will also ask the regents to approve construction of new student housing at West Village, including 3,265 new beds serving incoming transfer students and continuing undergraduates. Groundbreaking for the West Village expansion project is targeted for late 2018 with over 1,400 beds coming online in fall 2020 and the rest available by fall 2021. The West Village expansion will also allow UC Davis to discontinue master leases of apartments within the city of Davis.
Reviews of West Village, Orchard Park included in EIR
The Environmental Impact Report for the new LRDP includes review of the West Village expansion and Orchard Park redevelopment projects. Once the EIR is certified, these projects will be ready for final project approval. A delay to the 2018 LRDP EIR will therefore also delay the West Village expansion project.
UC Davis staff are currently working hard on the development proposal for the Orchard Park site. Last fall, UC Davis selected University Student Living of New Jersey to enter exclusive negotiations on both the Orchard Park and West Village projects. The Orchard Park development is planned to include a mix of below-market and at-market rental units for students with families and for graduate students.
Prior to selection of the developer, the Orchard Park project has benefited from extensive consultation with graduate students through the Orchard Park Redevelopment Project Advisory Committee. As the project moves forward, a new advisory team will be established, to be chaired jointly by Graduate Studies and Student Affairs staff.
LRDP caps a 3-year process
Adoption of the new Long Range Development Plan caps a process that began with a series of public outreach events in 2015. The plan will remain in force until amended or replaced.
Since the fall of 2015, UC Davis has held a series of public open houses and workshops, met with city and local officials and staff, and responded to numerous public inquiries. UC Davis planners have listened carefully to community feedback and made significant changes to the plan, including:
- Removing proposed student housing from Russell, Toomey and Howard fields at the northeast corner of campus;
- Increasing the amount of student housing planned for campus from 6,200 additional beds in the January 2017 update to 9,050 beds in the final version (8,500 in new construction and 550 from “doubling up” of existing apartments in West Village);
- Aiming for increased housing density in new developments, for example through considering taller buildings, remote parking and other initiatives.
Solano Park and other housing projects
The Solano Park housing complex will remain open until a replacement solution for student family housing becomes available. A facility condition assessment is currently underway by a third party consultant to identify immediate needs, long term needs and cost projections. The Student Housing team will continue to work with residents to maintain the complex and make sure Solano Park remains a great place to live.
At their March meeting, the regents approved replacement of Emerson Hall in the Cuarto apartment complex. The redevelopment will replace a 50-year old building housing 500 students with three buildings housing 809 students, expected to open in fall 2022.
Work is underway to replace Webster Hall in the same complex with a new building housing 400 students, up from 260 in the old building. The new residence hall is set to open in fall 2019.
In February 2018, Chancellor Gary S. May announced the formation of a task force on affordable student housing, to report in summer 2018, and further efforts to consider all options for housing affordability will continue.
Completion of the LRDP will position UC Davis to expand on existing partnerships and upcoming collaborations with the city of Davis on a range of issues, such as the city’s rental registration and resources program and model lease, implementation of the Nishi development, Russell Boulevard corridor planning, and University Mall district planning.