ALBANY, N.Y. -- Leaders at UAlbany say it's time for a campus makeover, and at a news conference Friday, they discussed the impact of the new "SUNY capital plan."
The plan calls for $293 million over five years for critically important capital improvements, renovations, and upgrades to the University's aging campus facilities, spanning more than 5.8 million square feet. This revitalization and renewal plan will preserve the University's existing infrastructure while creating an estimated 2,500 Capital Region jobs.
In December 2012, the SUNY Board of Trustees recommended a $5 billion SUNY Capital Plan for the State University's state operated campuses over the next five years. Chancellor Nancy Zimpher's budget testimony underscored the need for critical maintenance funding of $2 billion for state operated campuses system wide.
With 82 percent of the UAlbany's physical plant now approaching at least 50 years of age, most of its capital facilities in severe need of repair and upgrade. There are more than $1.2 billion of critical maintenance and upgrade backlog needs across the UAlbany campuses.
The University at Albany's capital request addresses those infrastructure needs that present unique and distinct challenges. With its Downtown Campus built in the early 1900s and its Uptown Campus's 21-acre mega-complex constructed in the 1960s, the University's physical plant requires costly and consistent levels of investment.
"The repairs and renovations the University requires are critical. Adoption of our capital investment plan is central to providing a learning environment for our students that promotes and enhances access, discovery, and innovation," said University at Albany President Robert Jones.
Capital Region leaders threw their support behind the University plan.
According to University officials, the five-year SUNY Capital Plan will provide a substantial infusion of capital monies into the local economy – in particular general contractors, trades professionals, and architectural/engineering firms.
During the five-year period of the previous Capital Plan 2008-2013, more than 75 Capital Region construction, engineering, and architectural firms directly benefitted from this plan resulting in over 2,600 jobs.