BGSU trustees approve building project to support innovative approach to design and construction learning

The Board of Trustees of Bowling Green State University has approved a new, $5.2 million expansion project that will support the University’s innovative School of the Built Environment. The school is recognized for its unique, integrated approach to training future architects and construction managers together.

The 12,000-square-foot expansion to the BGSU’s Park Avenue building will allow the University to house the school and its two signature programs together under one roof. The Park Avenue facility is currently home to the architecture program. The board approved the expansion at its Dec. 6 meeting at the BGSU Firelands campus in Huron.

“Our School of the Built Environment demonstrates BGSU’s leadership and innovation in higher education,” BGSU President Rodney K. Rogers said. “We’re responding to the needs of the architecture and construction communities. Industry leaders will tell you that it is absolutely critical that architects are knowledgeable about construction and that construction managers have an understanding and respect for architecture and design. This new facility will strengthen our ability to do that.”

BGSU’s construction management program is one of the oldest programs in the state of Ohio and the country. Alumni of the program lead some of the largest construction companies in the world. BGSU’s architecture program is one of its fastest growing programs. This year’s freshman class is twice as large as the previous year.

Trustees also received an update on another innovative program — the Cedar Fair Resort and Attraction Management (RAAM) program and the progress of construction on its new home in downtown Sandusky. The 78,030-square-foot, multipurpose facility is slated to open fall 2020 and will house classrooms, common spaces and apartment-style housing for students.

The RAAM program, a public-private partnership between Cedar Fair and BGSU, will help meet the needs of the trillion-dollar resort and attraction industry for which Cedar Fair is a leader. The program is the only program of its kind in the country that specifically addresses the specialized needs of amusement parks and similar destinations.

In other action, the trustees approved infrastructure upgrades to the Slater Family Ice Arena. The project is the final phase of work that began in 2016, and will include replacing the studio skate rink concrete floor and piping as well as installing a new energy-efficient, ammonia refrigeration system.

Additionally, the board approved tenure for Dr. Glenn Davis, the newly appointed vice provost for academic affairs and professor in the Department of English. Davis will join the University in January; he will lead priority academic initiatives identified in the University’s new strategic plan, Focus on the Future.

The board also approved the naming of several spaces at BGSU Firelands to support the newly renovated Allied Health and Sciences area. On hand to receive special recognition was Kathleen Linz, who honored her late husband, Dr. Anthony Linz, by naming two spaces after him: the Anthony J. Linz Respiratory Care Lab and the Anthony J. Linz Respiratory Lecture Room. The couple and their two children all earned degrees from BGSU. Anthony Linz was a pulmonary critical care physician in Sandusky and served as the medical director of the BGSU Firelands respiratory care program for more than 30 years until his death in 2015.

“The Linz family is a strong supporter of BGSU. We are grateful to Kathleen and her family for their generous gift,” said Pamela Conlin, vice president for University Advancement and president of the BGSU Foundation. “These two learning spaces will help our faculty teach future health care professionals for many years to come.”