beerbeer

UConn moving West Hartford campus to city

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The University of Connecticut is planning to move its Greater Hartford Campus from West Hartford to downtown Hartford within a year.

Susan Herbst, UConn president, said in a statement, "Moving the Greater Hartford campus back to the city, where it began and belongs, will better enable the campus to fulfill its academic mission, provide a major boost for downtown Hartford and save the university millions in the process.'

Herbst said that "ensuring that UConn is fully contributing to the life of our capital city is one of my highest priorities… The campus was originally intended to offer an urban education near the seat of state government and there is no better place to accomplish that than in the heart of downtown. This will be a win-win for UConn, our students and the City of Hartford."

The university plans to move into an existing downtown facility, which has not yet been identified, and sell its 58-acre campus in West Hartford.

http://www.courant.com/news/education/hc-uconn-moves-to-hartford-20121108,0,1854688.story

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I didnt read this thread or the article yet.... but HOLY CRAP... just the headline gives me goose bumps!

EDIT:

OK, so now I read it!

It said something about an existing facility downtown. So I can only assume this will be on Constitution Plaza. Not only does it make sense in a million ways, but there is vacancy and there is an existing UCONN building there AAAAAAAANNNNNDDDDDDDDDDDDD......

met life just forclosed on the plaza making the timing dubious.

But we know they are going to want to sell parts of it and well lease space in the several vacant buildings.

I am hoping that UCONN takes over that midrise on the NE corner of the plaza. and grows from there.

Edited by The Voice of Reason

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holy crap papabear... you are alive

still at Big Orange?

I miss that place... OK not true but I miss drinking at city steam for lunch!

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This is just epic news. I've heard they are moving into the old Travelers Education Center on Constitution Plaza which is already configured as classrooms. This news along with the apartments at the old Clarion, activity at Front Street, and hopefully moving state offices to CT River Plaza really bodes well for this part of Downtown really transforming itself. If we can get the housing component at Front Street soon and AI gets financing for his apartment tower, there is really going to be a ton of life in this part of town.

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To put this in perspective. There are about 1,600 undergrads and 400 grad students in the UConn/Hartford system. Add in the facility and staff, it's like a 2,000+ business moving downtown. The real upside is that they are mostly smart, young folks, the kind who energize the local space.

UConn seems very committed to the city, a very good sign. According to the HBJ, UConn is interested in 200 CP.

Edited by beerbeer

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This is a huge move for Hartford.

While some students may not be thrilled I think ultimately this will raise enrollment. The Stamford downtown campus has grown significantly and the school is now looking into building a downtown dorm. The crazy thing there is that enrollment in Stamford is less than West Hartford is now. Maybe in a couple years each city will have a dedicated dorm or two.

The Travelers training center is the location. no way its going to be somewhere else. They have the parking garage and they have classroom space already built out. Its just perfect. This will also help the clarion get funding and maybe even help AI get going.

Unbelievable to think that we might have 2000 students and staff using 200 CP, 199 Apartments at 5 CP, 195 Apartments in a new building at 3 CP, the Back 9 Network TV Studio in the old Spris location, and 2000 state workers in CT River plaza. Thats 4000+ new daytime visitors and 400+ 24 hour residents plus any night class activity and retail brought on by this increased population!

Awesome!

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200 CP was the front runner as it had classrom space built out already, but it is NO LONGER IN THE RUNNING due to several issues including asbestos and other nuisances like that.

 

So instead UConn is looking for space somewhere else in downtown and would build the space out to work as classrooms. 

 

I am kind of bummed by this development as I think that lolcation would be great for the plaza, for the plaza apartments and honestly for that area of Main street because I think the energy would flow that way.   We will see where they will end up now, but since they are seeking a pretty significant amount of space the options might be limited.  especially with the state seeking such huge blocks of space.

 

Assuming that CT river plaza is out of contention due to state office workers, as is 55 Farming ton ave, where else is there >200K SF that couls be turned into classrooms?

 

Goodwin Square is my first thought.

 

Honestly..... the CT Mutual building would have been a great option right now even though its just outside of down town.

 

 

Ohhh and the >200K sf number is because they are adding a few other departments to the move.  departments that are currently in Storrs. like masters in engineering or the writing program.

 

I officially now <3 Uconn.

 

my source is legit, BTW,  but lets just say that everything I wrote is based on a conversation with someone involved in the process.

 

Good stuff but also bad stuff.

where is there 200K SF  available downtown right now?

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http://www.hartfordbusiness.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20130123/NEWS01/130129940/1003/NEWS

 

135K SF is not big enough but 103K is?

 

weird...

 

Also, I think the HBJ reads my posts and then seeks sources and writes articles.  Happens here all the time.   I WANT A FREE SUBSCRIPTION!  its the least they can do.

 

I am not a fan of the Talcot building, but since it is such a terrible building this might be the only way to get any use out of it.  They would also need additional space is another building.

 

I dont like that its next to CCC and would confuse people.  The plaza would be so much more ideal!

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More

http://www.hartfordbusiness.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20130124/NEWS01/130129909/-1/NEWS

 

http://courantblogs.com/ct-real-estate/uconn-casting-wider-net-in-downtown-hartford-for-campus-relocation/

 

 

In its RFP UConn said it needs 150,000 square feet of usable space and 850 parking spaces to accommodate 3,100 students and 300 faculty and staff

 

but thats usable space, they need 235K gross.

 

see that new number?

 

3100 students!

3400 total people  awesomeness!

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<p>So, I know they have an RFP out, but I looked on the CBRE web site anyways.</p>

<p>&nbsp;</p>

<p>Didnt realize how much space was available in 280 Trumbull</p>

<p>looks like 5 full vacant floors.&nbsp; thats 125K SF anyways, and overal there seems to be&nbsp;about 200K available</p>

<p>&nbsp;</p>

<p>20 church has about 100K available mostly on 3 floors</p>

<p>&nbsp;</p>

<p>&nbsp;</p>

Edited by The Voice of Reason

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More details on the move and the details around Uconn science thing thrt Gov proposed yesaterday.

http://www.hartfordbusiness.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20130201/NEWS01/130209996/1003/NEWS

 

70 Million for the relocation.

The most interesting part...

 

Sources tell HBJ Today that the empty office building at One Talcott Plaza could now be the frontrunner for relocation. The building is owned Laz Parking, whose CEO and founder Alan Lazowski has had an appetite for downtown development.


Sources say a deal could include UConn buying that 103,000 square foot building and constructing an additional office near the site, but no plans have been finalized.

 

Now this is something that makes more sense.

It may not be the most economic sense, but the inclusion of construction makes this space way more understandable.

 

So you guys better understand the location and what It sounds like is being discussed...

The building in question is the one next to the community college.  From Main Street its set behind the surface lot that was planned as 1000 Main street back in the day.  LAZ bought it for 1 million even several years back.

 

The building has a funky garage in it and 108K vacant office space.  I'm sure 70 million would easily buy the building and land leaving probably 60+ to build and outfit new space.

 

Since this parking lot is pretty big any development would be pretty short.  I can only assume though that LAZ and UConn would want a garage incorporated into any development as well.    no matter what... Hartford would gain better street interaction on this site.  there is no way to avoid that :)

 

and with 3400 bodies coming and going the foot traffic would increase considerably.  and I suspect retail space in any new building would be easy to fill.  It will likely also spread to 20 Church, 960 Main, and 901 Main.  I think the retail is already full at the the Richardson building.

 

I would hope that any building plans might maybe also have a housing element, but only for purely selfish reasons as I want a downtown population above 5K ASAP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Here's an idea.

 

Why doesn't UConn partner with AI Tech Center on a new building at CP?

 

The lower floors could be built to UConn specifications. AI could move their company to the top floors.  And they could even add some penthouses and a roof bar.

 

 

Everyone wins. UConn get a new facility built to their needs. AI gets its shiny new HQ. Hartford fills and empty lot.

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There have been a series of articles about this lately.

 

one mentions 13 bids being submitted, so thats great news.  any time you have this many options something decent should happen.

 

the other brings back 1000 Main Street and Talcot Plaza.

 

I am not sure how I feel about putting UConn right next to CCC.  I really think that they loose something by being next to each other.  who knows though.

 

the plan for 1000 main street is for LAZ to build a new building for UConn and to rennovate their parking garage and existing space.  UConn would lease that space, LAZ would own.

 

I suppose that this is good because the buildings would pay taxes still.  and it would fill a large surface parking lot with a building and instant vibrancy.

 

My biggest concerns about this move in general is the design of whatever is built.  CCC was designed to be internally facing.  There are like 2000 kids going there and they dont need to walk onto main street for anything.  they have everything inside that massive old department store.  While I think there are some awesome spaces in there that could be incredibly cool someday(when fully leased out like the Prue in Boston) Id prefer that people ventured outside. 

 

For these reasons, I think the state might do better with simply acquiring talcott plaza and the 200 CP building.  this way they own their own 900 car garage and have over 200K sf of office space for the campus.  they would also still have the vacant parking lot at 1000 Main Stret for potential future expansion.   70 Million could easily cover all that... easily!

and for now, they can just leave the business school where it is.  this way they have a semi campus environment.

and a nice plaza to hang out on (that can get fixed up too.

 

 

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talcottplaza-300x225.jpg

 

 

 

The University of Connecticut is targeting a corner of Main Street next to the G. Fox building.The corner of Main and Talcott streets in downtown Hartford is the focus. The proposal, submitted by LAZ Parking’s Alan Lazowski, would include a renovation of the nearly 900-space parking garage at One Talcott Plaza and the construction of a new building, a source says. The new building would be located on an existing parking lot owned by LAZ which is between the parking garage and Main Street, a source says. One Talcott Plaza also includes 103,000 square feet of now vacant office space that would part of the plan.

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If the UConn move saves this facade that alone makes it worth it. Too much of the beautiful architecture of this city has been lost.

 
 
41120096_c9785302fe_z.jpg

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I think we should see all 13 proposals.

 

I bet there is one at AI engineers as well.

the paper seems to be sharing 1 per day.

 

 

I dont like the Downtown North unless they could find a private developer to build something significant right next to it and over 84 to make it more pedestrian friendly.  even still the 1000 Main street parking lot would be a dead spot, so generally I do not support downtown North.

 

My issue with Front Street is also space related and appropriateness. Id rather see housing in Phase 3.   not that the housing in Phase 2 isnt good, and with Ucon in Phase 3 the area could be interesting, but really, in order to make an engaging space, this part of town will need more than115 residents.  Also its a moderate walk from the rest of dowqntown and I am not sure it will provide as much synergy as 200 CP, Talcott or AI Tech Center (let alone other proposals)

I think this would become a bit of an easy on easy off highway thing.

and it would likely help rent space at front street, but ultimately, long term, I prefer another 200 residences.

then the arch street lots can be developed into even more mixed use.  this would help bridge the gap over the witehead more than an office building filled with kids. 

 

I am trying to see what all the options are before I get my hopes up on anything.

 

I dont mind 1000 Main depending on design,

I dont mind Front Street agaion depending on design (will there be a housing component)

Id like to see a proposal at the AI Engineers site

Id like to see 200 CP somehow brought back in the mix

Im curious if there are proposals for Asylum and Main?

Im curious if there are proposals for the colt building -not sure id like it but its interesting

Im curious where and what else is on the table...

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I really like the idea of putting this on Front Street, however I think my only issue would be that Front Street seems to be doing OK now and may not need UConn to make phase III successful. I think if anything, AI's project could really get a huge boost out of this and help get it off of the drawing board. I think 200 CP would be good still too.

 

I definitely want this to go more in the riverfront/front street area then up on Main St. though. The scale with this project is not enough to transform downtown North so there would have to be some other pieces proposed for that to make sense to me. The Laz property could work though, but again, I think they should shore up what is happening near Front Street right now and focus on this part of Main St. next.

 

I knew that when UConn put this out to bid that every project would try to get a piece of that action. I find this pretty entertaining though and will love seeing this play out.

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good assessment Tycoon.

 

AI has a lot of potential but it likely needs the most help to make it work.  so, for this reason, maybe Uconn is a good fit there.

 

Front Street has GOBS of state backing already and I think will work out if they keep adding retail WITH housing. 

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good assessment Tycoon.

 

AI has a lot of potential but it likely needs the most help to make it work.  so, for this reason, maybe Uconn is a good fit there.

 

Front Street has GOBS of state backing already and I think will work out if they keep adding retail WITH housing. 

 

Given the city usually favors certain developers, I suspect that it will throw its "gobs" to a project that has already received a lot of help. 

 

I would handicapp Main Street next to G Fox as #1 and Front Street as #2 as the likely location of the UConn Hartford branch.

 

As a former President of the UConn Hartford student government, I would have loved to go to school in the old Hartford Times building.

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That building as an asset to the city no matter what they use it for in the future.

 

In fact I will be thrilled when Phase II is build because the "street Wall" for (is that Grive street?) will be complete for a nice long section all the way to the whitehead.

 

even with an unused Hartford times facade, its presense adds to the prettiest stretsh of road in downtown Hartford ( OK Pratt is pretty too, but the trees make this part of downtown really nice in summer.

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That building as an asset to the city no matter what they use it for in the future.

 

In fact I will be thrilled when Phase II is build because the "street Wall" for (is that Grive street?) will be complete for a nice long section all the way to the whitehead.

 

even with an unused Hartford times facade, its presense adds to the prettiest stretsh of road in downtown Hartford ( OK Pratt is pretty too, but the trees make this part of downtown really nice in summer.

 

I agree. Even with it just being the facade it's still a huge visual presence. When you walk along Main St. it looks stunning when viewed looking across the mall between city hall and the Wadsworth. I really can't wait to see it actually reintergrated into an active building.

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I saw today that they are seeking further info from some of the proposals.   apparently those are the most interesting ones.

 

they have not eliminated any yet however.

 

so, I think it said they have 2 weeks to get the info back to UConn

 

 

 

Also, the state semi approved the 2B Uconn innitiative recently.  this bodes well for a few of the campuses.  Storrs mainly but Stamford will be expanded and add Dorms.  I think to offer more options as a NYC presence.

 

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