UofM develops $200M plan to renovate campus

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The University of Memphis is developing a $200M plan to renovate its campus, according to a release from the school’s Board of Trustees.

Board members recently approved several updates to the campus master plan.

The renovations will focus on academic buildings and research and double campus housing by including a new building for student-athletes.

The new master plan includes fewer large classrooms and more active learning classrooms, such as teaching labs.

Upgrading and building new classrooms is a top priority for the college.

Along with new buildings will come upgrades and renovations to current buildings that will hopefully make students feel comfortable on the campus once the pandemic is over.

U of M student John Stoner says he rarely comes to campus but believes the changes will be beneficial to all students.

“Mostly I’ve been in online classes because of my busy schedule. I guess for those that still want to have a college experience they can feel safer,” Stoner said.

Food options would be revised, and delivery would be available, the release said.

The plan also includes improvements to the campus ventilation systems and connectivity for students who are learning on- and off-campus.

Cybersecurity will be enhanced, according to the release. The UofM responded to some data breaches in part by implementing Duo, an app that enhances login security for online campus platforms.

Under the proposed plan, Clement and Mitchell Halls will be removed and rebuilt as new classroom buildings. The new classroom building would host core classes in history, philosophy, sociology, and political science, the release said.

Buildings currently being fixed and renovated include the field house, student and wellness center, and the family music center.

“That actually seems like it will be easier for me to be honest,” Stoner said.

The master plan explains the university will move forward with an additional 500-bed living facility for students that will include two, three, and four-bedroom units.

The building will be built on the University’s Park campus near the nursing school and athletic buildings.

The plan would encourage a more walkable, pedestrian-friendly campus, and preserve heritage trees on the grounds, the release said.

Part of the renovations would include 68,000 square feet of space for animal holdings related to research.

New academic and research buildings would be built on the Park Avenue side of campus. The graduate student family housing that was built in the ‘60s will be replaced, and the campus entrance will be updated, the release said.

Other improvements are coming to the soccer stadium, baseball field, golf greens and football training center.

At the Lambuth campus in Jackson, the plan includes renovating the Spangler, Sprague and Harris buildings for nursing and health studies. Oxley Commons would be demolished. The Library would be transformed into a Learning Commons.

Several projects with projected completion dates are listed below:

Elma N. Roane Field House updates: spring 2021

R. Brad Martin Student Wellness Center: summer 2021

Scheidt Family Music Center: spring 2022

STEM Research and Classroom Building: fall 2023