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Board of Trustees approves repair and upgrade projects

The Board of Trustees of Illinois State University approved repair and equipment upgrade projects in two residence halls and space renovation projects in two academic buildings.

The Board of Trustees gave its approval for exterior repairs and curtain wall replacement for Wilkins Hall. The campus residence hall opened in 1964 and underwent a major renovation in 2005. As part of a regular maintenance cycle, the exterior joint sealants will be inspected and replaced as needed, and a waterproof coating will be applied to pre-cast exterior panels. The project will also include the replacement of the exterior curtain wall system. The $3.5 million project, funded by bond revenue reserves, will be undertaken during summer 2018.

Board members authorized a project to refurbish and upgrade convectors used for heating and cooling in student rooms at the Watterson Towers residence hall complex. The student room heating and cooling delivery system is original to the building and specific components are obsolete. The project will include the replacement of controls and air registers for all student rooms, and the installation of zone pumps for more efficient control over heating and cooling in the facility. The $1.6 million project will be funded through bond revenue reserves and will be completed over several summer breaks.

Watterson Towers will also receive an upgrade to its existing fire detection system under a project approved by Trustees. The work, to be completed during the summers of 2018 and 2019, will upgrade the fire alarm system by replacing smoke detectors, audible alarms, and the system’s main panel. The $1.9 million project is funded by bond revenue reserves.

Space renovations
Trustees also approved the renovation of spaces in Fell Hall and Williams Hall to accommodate expanded international student programs.

Portions of the existing Office of International Studies and Programs (OISP) space on the second floor of Fell Hall will be renovated, along with several rooms on the first floor of Williams Hall. OISP’s Study Abroad and Management Development International staff will move to the spaces in Williams, while spaces on the second floor of Fell will be used for staff associated with the INTO partnership. The project scope also includes public space improvements on the first and second floors of Fell Hall and the construction of an all-purpose room and restroom facilities. The $1.5 million project will be paid for with university funds and funds from a joint venture established between INTO and Illinois State University.

Turf replacement
The Board of Trustees authorized a $627,000 construction project for replacing the artificial turf in Hancock Stadium during this spring semester. The existing turf in the stadium was installed in 2007 and has reached the end of its useful life. Funding for the project comes from athletic and recreation facilities reserves.

Student health insurance
Trustees approved the renewal of a contract with Aetna Student Health for student health insurance for the 2018-2019 policy year. Student health insurance rates are set at $262 per semester for the fall 2018 and spring 2019 semesters, and $197 for the summer 2019 session. The newly approved rates represent a 5.2 percent increase over the current rates ($249/$187). This is the first health insurance rate increase for students since the 2015-2016 policy year.

Security contract
The Board also approved a revision to the current contract with Securitas for unarmed campus security services, and a contract renewal with that company. The current contract with Securitas (July 1, 2015–June 30, 2018) has been revised from $1.9 million to $2 million to cover operational cost increases incurred by Securitas due to increases in mandated prevailing wage and health and welfare benefits. The estimated cost for the renewed contract (July 1, 2018–May 16, 2022) is $2.85 million. Funding for the contracts with Securitas come from auxiliary facilities system operating revenues.

Redbird Adventure Center naming
The Board of Trustees of Illinois State University formally approved the name Redbird Adventure Center for the University’s campus outdoor activity center. When opened, the center will offer services to the Illinois State campus and surrounding community that will include a high ropes course for people of all abilities.

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