UC Berkeley >
2020 Long Range Development Plan LRDP News
Home button
LRDP News button
LRDP Documents button
Project Timeline button
Community Meetings button
Related Reports button
Faqs button
  spacer  
  map image  
spacer


UC Berkeley officials regularly receive questions from the community, press, and others regarding the 2020 Long Range Development Plan and Tien Center Environmental Impact Report. As part of our effort to keep all members of the community fully informed, we have created this document, which will be updated with new questions and made available to the public as additional inquiries are received.

Also available is a Fact Sheet that summarizes key data and major concepts of the draft 2020 LRDP and EIR.

Q: Why prepare a Long Range Development Plan and EIR, and why do it now?

A: Each University of California campus prepared an LRDP and accompanying Environmental Impact Report during the period 1988-90, with a planning horizon of 2005. As we approach this horizon, a new LRDP is necessary to ensure campus development beyond 2005 continues to be shaped by a coherent vision for the future of UC Berkeley.

One major impetus to updating the LRDP is the need to accommodate higher levels of UC enrollment. Due to the dramatic growth in the numbers of college age Californians, the University as a whole must accommodate an increase of 63,000 students over base year 1998 to meet its mandate under the California Master Plan for Higher Education. State law (Public Resources Code Section 21080.09) requires environmental effects relating to changes in enrollment to be evaluated in an LRDP EIR.

Another impetus is the recent completion of two visionary campus documents. The Strategic Academic Plan outlines the key challenges the campus faces in sustaining and promoting academic excellence, and recommends principles and initiatives to address those challenges. The New Century Plan builds upon the Academic Plan and sets out policies and guidelines for the campus' physical development. Together, the Strategic Academic Plan and the New Century Plan describe a long-term vision for UC Berkeley: the role of the new 2020 LRDP is to describe what we plan to do in the next 15 years to realize that vision.

Q: The campus and its environs are already densely urbanized. How would growth fit within this context?

A: UC Berkeley is an urban campus, and the city around us is as much a part of the Berkeley experience as the campus itself. The quality of city life, including its diverse and dynamic mix of students and other community residents, is a large part of what makes UC Berkeley a unique and desirable place to learn, work, and live. Although the 2020 LRDP will not commit the University to any specific project, it will include policies and design guidelines to ensure our future projects respect and enhance the unique character of both campus and city. For an example of an illustrative future scenario based on sensitive, contextual development, go to the New Century Plan link.

Q: How would the 2020 LRDP compare to the 1990-2005 LRDP with respect to campus headcount?

A: In terms of population, the 1990-2005 LRDP was a "no growth" plan: campus headcount (the number of people enrolled or employed at UC Berkeley) was projected to be slightly lower in 2005 than in 1990. As we know, however, the dramatic growth in the state's college-age population has in fact led to significant enrollment growth on all UC campuses, including Berkeley. UC Berkeley is in the process of absorbing a 4,000-student increase in enrollment by 2010, most of which has already been accommodated. Once the full increase is accommodated, the 2020 LRDP will propose that the campus stabilize enrollment.

UC Berkeley has also experienced steady growth in research in the public interest, and we expect this trend to continue. The importance of our research lies not only in its benefits to society, but also in providing our students with direct experience in critical inquiry, analysis, and discovery: this experience is what makes a research university education unique, and it is integral to our educational mission. By 2020, as a result of growth in both enrollment and sponsored research, campus headcount during the regular academic year may grow by up to 12% over what it is today.

Q: What would this growth mean in terms of space demand?

A: Despite no expected growth in campus headcount, the 1990-2005 LRDP proposed an increase of up to 723,000 net gross square feet in academic and support program space. In 2002, the campus amended the LRDP to accommodate another 325,000 gsf of net new space in the replacements of Stanley Hall and Old Davis Hall. To date, roughly 1,000,000 gsf of the space proposed under the 1990-2005 LRDP is complete, under construction or in design.

By 2020, we estimate the space demands of campus academic and support programs may increase by up to 2,200,000 net gsf, or roughly 18% over current and approved program space. New space is required not only to accommodate our increase in enrollment, but also to support continued expansion of research and research-based education, and provide space for several new and exciting academic initiatives. However, some of this increase is necessary just to make up for the space deficit we already have on campus: due to budget constraints, our investment in the campus has not kept pace with our recent growth in enrollment and research.

Q: So why not build somewhere other than Berkeley? What are the plans at the other UC campuses?

A: In the long term, the new campus at UC Merced will begin to absorb a significant share of future growth. However, due to our current budget situation, the opening of the Merced campus has been delayed at least a year. The other UC campuses are responding to the same challenges as Berkeley, and their recent LRDPs show rates of future growth equal to or greater than Berkeley. For example, UCLA just completed an updated LRDP which anticipates growth of up to 1,200,000 gsf of program space through 2010. In its recently published draft LRDP, UC Davis anticipates growth of up to 2,500,000 gsf of program space by 2015.

Q: How would the parking objectives in the 2020 LRDP compare to the 1990-2005 LRDP?

A: In 1990, the campus had 7,450 existing parking spaces. The 1990-2005 LRDP proposed another 1,010 spaces, which would have brought our total number of spaces to 8,460. Today, the campus has roughly 7,600 existing and approved auto parking spaces. By 2020, our parking objectives include up to 2,300 new spaces, which could bring our total up to 9,900 spaces, or up to 1,440 more than envisioned in the 1990-2005 LRDP. These additional spaces are necessary to accommodate future growth not envisioned in the 1990-2005 LRDP.

Because the state provides no funds for campus parking, the full cost of parking construction, operation and maintenance must be supported by revenues. Our goals to improve the parking supply must therefore be balanced by the need to maintain reasonable fees for those who must drive to campus, and to avoid building surplus capacity. The 2020 objectives may be adjusted in the future to reflect changes in market conditions and parking demand, but any substantial increase over the above maxima would require an amendment to the 2020 LRDP.

Q: What would the plan do to discourage single occupant vehicle commuting to campus?

A: The campus worked in partnership with the community and the City of Berkeley to develop the Transportation Demand Management study, completed in March 2001. The final report presented a range of transportation-promoting measures that inform both campus transportation programs and our partnerships with the city. Recent initiatives include: a revitalized carpool program that grew by 120% in 2002-2003, from 220 people to 498 people (124 people turned in single user permits to participate in the carpool program); the AC Transit class pass for students; expanded subsidies and pretax purchase of transit tickets; City Car Share pods for use by faculty, staff and students; planned installation this year of secure bike-parking cages, and bike parking monitored by security cameras; and joint promotion of bus rapid transit along a major corridor serving the campus and environs.

Q: How would the housing objectives in the 2020 LRDP compare to the 1990-2005 LRDP?

A: In 1990, the campus had 5,800 existing and planned beds of single student university housing. The 1990-2005 LRDP proposed another 2,350-3,410 new beds of single student housing, which would have brought our total number of single student beds to 8,150-9,210.

Today, the campus has nearly 7,200 beds of single student housing existing or under construction. By 2020, our housing objectives include up to 2,500 new single student beds within a mile of campus or within 20 minutes by transit. Our housing objectives also include up to 1,100 new single student beds at University Village in Albany: these would be entitled under a separate master plan. Together, these objectives could bring the campus' inventory of single student beds up to 10,800, or up to 1,590 more than the maximum envisioned in the 1990-2005 LRDP. As in the 1990-2005 LRDP, our inventory of student family units is planned to remain at its current level, but the 2020 LRDP may include provisions for construction of up to 200 units of family-suitable housing for faculty and/or staff.

Because the state provides no funds for campus housing, the entire cost of housing construction, operation, and maintenance must be supported by revenues. Our goals to improve the amount and quality of housing must therefore be balanced by the need to keep rents at reasonable levels, and avoid building surplus capacity. The 2020 objectives may be adjusted in the future to reflect changes in market conditions and demand for campus housing, but any substantial increase over the above maxima would require an amendment to the 2020 LRDP.

Q: Why will the new EIR for the 2020 LRDP also examine the Tien Center?

A: A new East Asian Library was anticipated in the 1990 Long Range Development Plan. Today, planning, funding and the opportunity to honor a cherished campus leader combine to make the Tien Center proposal particularly timely. No other campus development proposal has reached a similar stage of certainty. The Tien Center will be an excellent example of how the campus will use the policies and guidelines in the 2020 LRDP to shape a real project.

Q: Where would the funding for build-out of the 2020 LRDP come from?

A: Some campus projects, including our extensive program of seismic improvements, are supported largely or entirely by state funds. Some projects are built entirely with donor funds, and many are financed through a combination of these and other sources, including special research initiatives such as the California Institutes for Science and Innovation. Many "auxiliary" campus programs, such as housing, parking and transportation, athletics, and recreation do not receive funding from the state, and must be supported entirely by donor funds and revenues such as rents and fees.

Q: What does the recent decline in state revenues imply for future campus growth?

A: Over the past three years, while UC systemwide enrollment has grown by 18 percent, state budget support has declined by 14 percent. This is an enormous challenge for every UC campus including Berkeley. The near-term prospects for higher education funding in California are uncertain, but it is important to remember the 2020 LRDP is a framework for a period of 15 years, and only a few short years ago the state economy, and the state budget, were very robust. We can not predict the pace at which the new investments described in the 2020 LRDP will occur, but we are convinced they are critical to the future of the campus.

Q: How will the campus LRDP relate to the LRDP for Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and its EIR?

A: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory is a United States Department of Energy facility, a discrete institution with its own management structure and federal reporting requirements to the DOE. The University of California, and not the Berkeley campus, manages LBNL for the DOE. However, LBNL and UC Berkeley are neighbors and both reside on land owned by the Regents of the University of California. Research initiatives sometimes link the two institutions, and some researchers have joint appointments at LBNL and UC Berkeley, yet our missions are clearly distinguishable and our institutional histories and cultures are unique. UC Berkeley is working closely with LBNL to ensure the combined environmental effects of our respective plans are accurately analyzed and appropriately mitigated.

spacer

spacer