September 13, 2022
From CFO and interim vice president for operations: Update on planned building demolitions
Recent infrastructure studies led by the Kansas Board of Regents have shown the entire higher education system in Kansas is plagued by large deferred maintenance backlogs and poorly utilized spaces. The deferred maintenance backlog at Kansas State University is approximately $430 million for mission-critical designated buildings. In order to address this issue, the Regents worked with the governor and state Legislature to secure additional funding to address deferred building maintenance and to provide funding dedicated to razing deteriorated facilities.
Utilizing the funds allocated by the state, several demolition projects are planned for campus buildings. Buildings chosen for demolition were selected based on several factors, including significant deferred maintenance backlog, extremely low utilization rates and the ability to capture savings from annual operating expenses. Units currently located within the selected buildings will be relocated to existing campus spaces, thereby increasing the overall space utilization of our buildings. Removal of these buildings also allows us to focus our limited maintenance and renewal resources on a smaller physical footprint.
Below are the buildings scheduled for demolition. Select demolition activities will begin next spring, with all razing completed by the end of summer 2024.
Edwards Hall: Originally built in 1967 as a residence hall, Edwards Hall currently houses several administrative units, including Human Capital Services, Environmental Health and Safety and campus police. The building received an "F" rating on the facilities condition index and has an estimated deferred maintenance backlog of $9.4 million. The estimated demolition cost is $1 million, with expected completion by May 2023, and the estimated operational savings will be approximately $200,000 annually. Following demolition, the space will be used for additional campus parking.
Natatorium and Gymnasium: The university permanently closed the natatorium in March 2020 due to ventilation and maintenance issues. The Gymnasium classrooms are utilized less than 10 hours per week. These buildings received "D" and "F" ratings on the facilities condition index and have an estimated deferred maintenance backlog of $19 million. The total estimated demolition cost is $3.4 million. The university is requesting KBOR allocate partial funding support for the gymnasium demolition from the Building Demolition Fund appropriated by the state. The demolition of the Natatorium will occur prior to the Gymnasium, with the Gymnasium demolition continuing into early 2024. The estimated operational savings will be approximately $300,000 annually. Unique art-deco components of the Gymnasium will be salvaged and reincorporated into a future project. Following demolition, the area will be returned to green space. Removal of these buildings will not impact Ahearn Field House. Ahearn Field House will be stabilized and prepared for future renovations at a later date.
K-State Gardens Greenhouse D Conservatory: Originally built in 1907, the conservatory is currently vacant and unusable. The unstable glass panels present a public safety issue and contain asbestos, which will be remediated during demolition. The conservatory received an "F" rating on the facilities condition index. The university is requesting KBOR allocate $350,000 for the razing from the Building Demolition Fund appropriated by the state. Demolition is expected to be completed by March 2023. Following demolition, the area will be turned into green space until funding is available to construct a new conservatory.
Facilities Planning Building, Salina campus: Originally built in 1955, the building currently houses the facilities planning department for Kansas State University Salina. The building received a "D" rating on the facilities condition index and has a deferred maintenance backlog of $1.3 million. The estimated demolition cost is $250,000, with expected completion by May 2023. Following demolition, the area will be returned to green space.
With these actions, we will eliminate approximately $30 million from our deferred maintenance backlog, generate approximately $500,000 in annual operating efficiencies and increase space utilization, which is one of KBOR's goals for all universities. These actions will also set the stage for a refresh of the campus master plan that we will be undertaking after the university's strategic planning effort has concluded.
We appreciate your patience as we work through these changes. The Division of Facilities is working closely with departments and individuals impacted by these demolitions on relocation plans. Additional information will be shared with campus once relocation plans are finalized.
Chief Financial Officer and Interim Vice President and Chief Operating Officer