Nov. 27, 2001

CONTACT: Ward Mullens






YPSILANTI - Finding a parking space on Eastern Michigan University campus just got a little easier.

The EMU Board of Regents, at its regular meeting Nov. 27, authorized the administration to proceed with construction of a new parking structure and two surface lots.

"Almost every college campus has a parking issue. We hope this plan will help alleviate some of the problem for us," said Patrick Doyle, vice president for business and finance for EMU.

The plan includes building a new 260-space parking structure on the south side of Pease Auditorium, the current site of the business and finance building. In addition, a 1,031-space surface lot would be constructed on the site of the existing intramural softball fields north of Phelps Hall. A second, smaller, 72-space lot also would be built east of the Alexander Music Building.

"The projects collectively will increase main campus parking by 1,363 spaces," Doyle said. That is approximately a 25-percent increase in central campus parking capacity, he said.

The cost to complete the identified projects is $6.7 million and would be funded from bond proceeds. The bond indebtedness would be paid with parking system revenues.

Doyle said that all or part of the business and finance building would be removed and that the staff would be relocated into a restored Hover building. Efforts are underway to determine if part of the business and finance building's original structure can be incorporated into a project.

In a subsequent action, the Board of Regents authorized the issuance of general revenue bonds and other matters relating to financing additional parking facilities and related projects.

In other actions:

The Board of Regents approved an increase in central campus parking rates for fiscal year 2003. The cost of parking permits will increase from $100 per year ($50 per term) to $130 per year ($65 per term). In addition, premium reserved parking spaces will be determined by location and demand. The price for these spaces is expected to range from $200 to $800 annually per space.

The Board of Regents approved the inclusion and participation of employees of The Eastern Michigan University Foundation and Eagle Crest Management Corporation in the EMU group medical benefits plan.

"We believe that the participation of these employees in EMU's plan will enhance the level of health care benefits provided to their employees," said Doyle.

The EMU Foundation and its wholly-owned subsidiary Eagle Crest Management Corporation are separately incorporated entities which jointly maintain a group medical benefits plan. The Foundation and Eagle Crest will be required to pay the full cost of their employees' participation in EMU's group medical benefits plan.