Valentine’s Day party. Things went well. Lots of GSC volunteers there. For the dogs for de-stress day, looks like dogs not available until last week of March or first week of April. We can’t do hamsters or gerbils, companies need to have insurance in case the dogs bite students. Grad formal May 5, need to decide on catering details.
Grad Housing Project
There was an article in the Stanford report. We can ask more questions today.
Residential & Dining Enterprises (R&DE) Update about the New Grad Housing Project
Shirley Everett (R&DE), Mike Vanfossen (R&DE), Ken Hsu (GLO Dean), Kip Fout (Dept of Health and Safety), Robert (P&TS), Jocelyn Breeland (R&DE), Susan Mineta (Public Affairs), Mark Bonino (Dept of Project Management), Imogen Hinds (R&DE), David Lenox (university architect), Matthew Brown (P&TS) are here. Shirley says Rodger Whitney has retired after 35 years. Shirley says want to bring us up to speed on design, parking, schedule, and hear what questions we have.
We start with university architect David Lenox, who will talk about the design aspects of the project. David says this is a milestone project for Stanford, this is a commitment to original decision by Stanford to have this be a residential university. Biggest project they’ve ever executed as a university. Everybody got really excited yesterday when they presented. High level view of the project, then bring us into the details. Long term campus plan and priorities: to expand the campus to the west in terms of research and academics, and also to continue to house and offer 4 years of residence life for UGs. Want to make sure that this is close to campus drive loop as possible, keep it easy and distributed east-west. Long term to bring more grad students onto campus, densify areas so we can bring more students. Made modifications to the planning of the new grad residences, but still basing it on 3 units that we’ve seen: premium 2 bedroom, junior 2 bedroom, premium studio. Want to remind us that this project is located on west side of EV, lots of great suggestions last year came from the families which shifted the site to the south, they really listened and took into account the cultures of the courtyards. This project helped keep and expand the number of families that can be accommodated in these courtyard clusters. This project is meant to be a face to the grad students. Currently the campus-serra intersection is bad, this will be a new hub. Some of the changes: reduce mass and scale of project by removing the wings from the residences (shorten the wings on 3 of the buildings), relocate underground parking to more equal distribution of parking spaces (when you build parking under many buildings you have to let the garages go all the way down and you have to dig one gigantic hole, they realized that with the scale and mass of these buildings you want to have them there a long time and have big mature trees grow on top over time; also want to better distribute the parking because the parking was too far from residence C and D and want to avoid having people in these building parking next to the families, so now the massive parking garage 900-950 spaces across the street and another 300-400 spaces adjacent to C and D residences. Will consolidate Campus-Serra into one giant roundabout, less confusing, will allow them to have a little bit more real estate, build garage and put recreation back on top of the garage. Division is also to close the rest of Serra mall until that roundabout, for the safety of pedestrians and bikes, this will be a much more direct and and safe route to get to work. Also can see that by moving the garage, we have more possibility to move the residence halls, so opened up the gap between residences B and C to make it a better gateway.). These are the changes. The gateway makes this a spectacular project. This is about creating a sense of community, we boil down the common spaces, each dorm has its own common spaces, laundry, huddle rooms, living rooms scattered aound, music practice rooms, each residence hall will be its own community. These common spaces are for all grad students, all EV and also all other grad students. A key part of the gateway is a market pavilion, which is a 2 story building that will have restaurant, pub, cafe, entertainment bar with TVs that you can watch events on, also have 200 spaces to sit inside, can also move outside into the courtyard with heat lamps and grills and maybe a place for music performances, a hub for activity. Also want to make sure that this functions the way students and the rest of the world functions. If you have 2400 students ordering online from Amazon etc, they are already thinking about the logistics of this, maybe an online store area in this market pavilion, have recycling for cardboard, etc. Moving into the commons, there will be arcades and even more common spaces such as computer clusters, event rooms, multipurpose rooms, diff size meeting rooms, community rooms for birthday parties etc, and also separate patios, grills, etc. Life here will be vibrant, welcoming, transformational for this part of campus. Also position between residence halls A&B and C&D, adjacent to the green spine for badminton, lawn bowling, grilling, etc. Transit will be important as well. The mission here is to not to have to use a car, for example to have zipcars or catch marguerite at the gateway, instead of driving and hunting for a parking space. Bike parking will be distributed equally among the residence halls, at each of the entrances they will be clustered bike parking at the surface. Can also have protected bike parking at the garages. Isa says that protected bike parking is very popular, especially during the summertimes or stuff for when its raining etc. David says, originally thought about protected parking, but students have tended to like parking right outside of their door. Isa says that the key for long-term garage parking would be to have key access or resident-only access, and brings up how this works at Lyman. David says, the new garage will be underneath Manzanita field. Similar to roble field, where there is a trellis and picnic table on top of the garage in order to activate the recreational value from this area. This precludes putting up a building there in the future, which is good because students need spaces like this around campus. Around a year ago, they provided some imagery to the board of trustees which was deemed “not good enough”, so they re-made the aesthetic designs to be more like “Stanford” such as Toyon Hall, Encina Commons, and Branner Hall. Most of these have towers, arcades, arches, claytile roofs, warm palettes, etc. Their building will follow suite. David shows a rendering of the drawing. Mitigating the height of the main buildings by having the lower buildings in front is great aesthetically. The buildings are pretty consistent, have a variety of heights, work themselves into the greenway and Kennedy residences. The buildings are 6, 8, and 10 stories. In the beginning they were 8, 10, 12, but this felt too high. The highest building is as high as the highest highrise today. Kate asks, the courtyard that’s supposed to be active, how is the sun supposed to get in? David says that he can’t promise there will always be sun, but the buildings are positioned far enough such that there will be natural light there at different times of the day. Isa asks about the purpose of the tower-like buildings at different times of the day. David says, the tower is a welcoming symbol, similar to other symbolic buildings around campus. This is meant to be a kind of “beacon” that you can see from far away. The tower will not be accessible because it is a small footprint. Sean asks, how energy efficient will the buildings be, in terms of conserving water and using solar? Mark says they just finished their energy modeling for the project. CA building code requires something, we are 5% better than their code. In terms of water conservation, CA is more restrictive on the types of water fixtures and features, so they will comply with those. Haven’t advanced to waterless toilets and urinals yet. There is opportunity for future photovoltaics, but not yet today. Currently is not a part of the project. David says they’ve been looking more at campus-wide planning instead of specific to a project, goes to cite sustainability efforts that Stanford has done all around the campus. The story is not about how each individual building on the campus fulfills sustainability. Materials: clay tile roofs, pre-cast building, base is combed pre-cast stone, the arcades are arches with ceilings. David shows more rendering images of the commons and other areas of the residences. They are trying to maximize, in terms of parking, where to maximize drop-off potential for people who want to carry groceries in, etc. The moves that they made to respond to the family concerns actually makes this into a better project because now it integrates better into street scape and the community. Pau asks what the top floors of the residence halls will be used for, since it looks different. David says that they have windows that are not transparent to break up the monotony when looking at the building. Isa says, she does not like the double-hang windows because in the summer you have to open the window to cool your room, but these windows are inefficient to get the heat out, making it very hard to cool the rooms. David says they’ve studied the windows quite a bit for that exact reason, they have to deal with air movement and making sure people don’t fall out of the windows, etc. Mark says, they wanted the look of double hung windows, but not sure what they ended up with. They are still studying, they are looking at awning windows right now. Regarding the ventilation system, these are highrise buildings, code requires the ability to evacuate smoke for fire purposes, so there are systems that move air quietly through the buildings, this combined with the windows should be able to push heat out of the buildings. There will be air movement through the units. The thinking is that this will also help the cooling problem during the summers. They will continue to study the windows. Shanna asks, will the new junior studio floorplans be similar to Kennedy? David says they are similar but they’ve made changes based on what they’ve learned from Kennedy. Shanna says in Kennedy junior studios it is really easy to set off the smoke alarms because ventilation in the kitchen areas is not good. Mike says, they thought of that in Kennedy where kitchens don’t have windows, there’s actually a switch in the junior studios and 2 bed 2 bath rooms there’s a separate switch to get rid of the exhaust. There’s a fan for the exhaust on your stove, and there’s a separate switch that you can turn on to get exhaust out. For the new roundabout, instead of having 2 intersections, they will bring the campus drive routes together, and the roundabout will be similar to what is there in the other roundabouts. The lighting will also be very important especially in the evening. Will pull the road closest to the knight management center tight with the other road to make the roundabout smaller. Isa asks if there had been public criticisms of moving the gas station from there? They said only criticisms came from ppl who had their cars serviced there, they helped them find new places to do this.
Now Matthew presents the P&TS presentation which deals with parking aspects of the project. One of their biggest concerns is whether they can accommodate all the permit holders during the construction phase. What they found during their study / census of utilization is that, of the 3000 spaces within EV, the utilization is 75%, the spaces that would be impacted during the construction is about 800 spaces, within the existing number of spaces within EV, they would be able to accommodate those that would be displaced. The challenge is that the parking won’t be as readily available as today, where it might be easy to find parking right in front of your residences. So considering alternatives: EV residences who don’t have driver licenses will have waived fees for Zipcar members, and for all EV residents there will be credits to use Uber/Lyft as well as waived fees for online delivery services. This will be only for EV residents at this point, they will revisit the issue of Rains later. Matt says they want to make sure the people being impacted have resources to mitigate the impacts. The latest info on P&TS can be found at https://transportation.stanford.edu/transportation-updates-escondido-village-residents. This webpage pertains specifically for EV residents and has lots of resources for those that are impacted. Kate says she thought they did a great job alerting residents about closing spaces, asks what kind of lead time students will get to move their cars for a lot closure. Matt says they will provide enough time to move your cars, it’s a fluid situation and they try to get info as fast as possible for people to make necessary arrangements for the impacts, would like to say 2-3 weeks but can’t confirm to that. Mark says, the overall commitment is that, when they make a permanent closure on a parking lot, they will give plenty of notice. Secondly, this won’t be a flash closure, this will happen over time. They will have some isolated temporary closures for utilities, etc, may have some small lot closures in April, this will happen over time. At this point he doesn’t foresee a total parking closure of all 800 stalls until summer at least. Kate asks, is it possible to encourage service vehicle drivers to park in their spots instead of their service spots? Matt says they can send out a memo to make sure that everyone is aware of the parking policy for different spaces. They will add additional loading zones for ES residents in EV to help alleviate long walks. Tianze asks is it possible to add some more of these close to Studio 5/6? Matt says they can definitely take this into consideration. Parking will be shifted towards the west side of campus with the opening of Roble, there’ll also be additional parking at Maples, GSB, and Wilbur. It might be difficult to find a spot near where you live, however. The mindset for P&TS is that they don’t want parking spots to be more than 10 mins away from their residences. These 3 parking lots are all within 10 minutes walk away. Kate asks, have they assessed lighting paths for walking back and forth. Matt says they definitely want to make sure that they have the available resources for these students. Shirley says there is a community meeting tomorrow. David will be there, as will Mark (project manager), Ken, and Matt from P&TS to answer the questions that students have.
Now we get project logistic updates from Mark. Mark says, this is a large project and has a lot of parts to it, here’s what we can expect. He has been doing work at EV for about 10-12 years, has learned the pattens for what to expect for people that live here. His team will spend the next 9 months to set the stage for construction, getting the logistics right. Fundamentally, the fences around the courtyards will be demolished, will disconnect buildings from natural gas, also removing personal property in the buildings such as furnitures (which will be donated to habitat for humanity), doing soft removal of trim, cabinetry, so they can look at more details relating to abatement. Will start to see trees being removed (about 1000 trees within various classifications), which will be moved to other locations around the campus for a few years. First stage of the project will be abatement, right now looking at protocols for that and working with environmental health and safety and looking at process of finding right contractors and right processes and doing what’s right. The abatement will probably happen around April 1, once that’s done then demolition groups will come to take buildings down. In this area there are lots of utilities, like water power sewer telecom etc. Mark’s job is to untangle this and make sure that they can disconnect these and keep the rest of the EV alive. Sometimes the utilities are very poorly documented because they are so old, so look through 50 years of history and see what they are dealing with. There’s also a telecom trunkline that goes behind Blackwelder, which will need to be reconnected and will probably take about 6 months to go through thousands of communication cables, what they are connecting, and relocate them. In the summer they will upgrade the EV spine which will become a firetruck rated access path, they are working on the design of that, cannot enclose the site and start construction until that is done. Right now they have not selected their general contractor for the project, they are going through the process now, anticipate they will start construction in earnest around Nov 2017 at the earliest. Spending time looking at construction schedule and what they can do and how processes work, quite a bit of manpower and materials that have to come onto the site for this to happen. Right now projecting very softly that this should open by fall of 2020. There’s a lot of work to do between now and then including confirming some schedule elements. New project website is up: newgradhousing.stanford.edu. What’s more important is that there will be an avenue to distribute advisories so people can expect changes that might be disruptive. Try not to pepper people with lots of advisories, but people need to be aware of things that will be changing. This website will also have updates on what people can look forward to, and construction photographs, and trying to get a drone to record videos of the process. This is also a way to communicate with the project, there is an email address and phone hotline for any concerns that can be communicated with the crew during construction. This was also up during the Kennedy and Munger constructions. Want to hear what people are experiencing so they can improve their processes. Want to tell us what will happen, let us know when there will be concerns. Mike says, when the websites went up, he registered all the GSC members so we can get the automatic email updates. Kate says, Mark talked about going in and testing abatement purposes, she heard something about lead in the paint in these buildings, and is aware of Santa Clara’s policy about lead in paint. Kip says, he worked with the Dept of Health and Safety, he handles lead / asbestos / anything relating to this. There are a lot of state regulations on a local and state levels on this. We are bound by regulations and Stanford has their own internal safety policies that go above and beyond what is required. They will do a full assessment of what is in these buildings such as lead or asbestos, make sure that the people who do this are licensed and certified, do vetting on their history. He will do an eval of the full plans that they want to do. Want to protect the workers, protect all of us beyond the fence, and follow the regulations. Kate asks if there’s a timeline in general for when testing will be taking place? Kip says the survey work is completed, they are looking into subcontractors to do the work. These buildings are 60s construction, there is lead paint there, there are asbestos containing mat’ls in various products in these buildings, these elements have been disclosed in these agreements, they haven’t discovered anything new. Typically they find things like vinyl floor tile that has asbestos, etc. Things like joint compound on the sheet rock walls, pipe installations that run inside wall cavities. The buildings are safe to live in, it’s when you start disturbing them that you have to pay close attention to these things. Sean asks if they will release a report on what’s inside these buildings. Mike says they already have, they sent a note out to all the EV residents conveying all the information that’s already in the housing contracts and websites to remind people of that. Transparency is very important, so they’ve already sent 2 notes out to the EV community last week with the info. They will continue to do so as they get closer to the demolition. They will probably see this for themselves that there is nothing going into the ground or the site. Kip says workers will be wearing exposure monitors, masks, etc, and they won’t be creating any emissions that will escape from the site. That industry is pretty evolved at this point. Isa asks, about the event room, what is the expected capacity of it (inside the pavilion)? Mark says it’s about 280 ppl maybe. Alan asks, have they considered using the roof space on these residences, spaces in the sun, etc. Mark says they haven’t considered those yet, the roofs have pitch to them and will have empty space within it where the mechanical equipment goes. The roof space is solar-panel ready if they want to, similar to the Kennedy project. David H suggests maybe putting new temporary bike parking in the parking garages for people who might want to ride their bikes to their cars in these garages. David (architect) says they might consider doing an art installation at the top of the entryway tower that might change colors depending on what is going on. Shirley thanks us for having them, says they are always open to suggestion and ideas (within reason and budget).
French Students Association:
- not here.
Colombian Students Assoc:
- event is Carnival at end of February (Feb 25). It’s a party-like event, all Colombians gather to celebrate culture and music. This is an open event so anyone can attend. Recommendation is $500 alcohol. Still looking for the location, but will find it soon. Isa asks them to update calendar when they have the place. They will have food and beer there. They are expecting around 68 grad students or so. Also have some money for food from Bechtel. Voting on recommendation for $500 alcohol, passes unanimously.
Mexican Assoc of Grad Students at Stanford:
- Planning to do a party for Mexican flag day which is Feb 23. Inauguration party, they will have tacos as dinner and have beer and ppl can mingle. Requesting $500 for dinner, expecting 50 ppl. Recommendation is $500 food and $200 alcohol. No RSVP is needed. The party will start at 7, Isa asks if they can update the calendar descriptions to 7 instead. Voting, passes unanimously.
Turkish Student Assoc:
- not here.
Funding Committee Update on Graduate Special Fee Request
Tianze says, yesterday they had meeting with SSE and UGS and they gave an overview about VSOs that are applying for grad special fees and UG special fees. They negotiated on the proportion btw undergrads and grads. They will hold a meeting soon to negotiate that with the VSOs, because on some of the proportions we are now giving them the same numbers as requested, so that’s about the joint fees between grads and UGs. On Grad only special fees, currently there haven’t been any applications, so Tianze has reached out to Chinese students association and Indian students association, Chinese students is not doing it and haven’t heard back from Indian students assoc. On joint fees hopefully we can vote on that next week. We are voting on their budgets to be putting on the ballot. The groups are likely to be: Cardinal Free Clinics, Stanford outdoors, Stanford Concert Network, Stanford energy club, Club Sports, Speaker’s Bureau, Viennese balls. David says he recommends not voting on this immediately next week so we have another week to review the budgets before we vote on it. Terence would like to approve the budget of the special fees groups as a bill. Potential things to look out for in the budgets: Frost/SCN raising their grad fees, Stanford energy club haven’t come to previous GSC funding meetings and are asking for a lot more this year and have a very small group, Club sports are mostly undergrads so might want to split it along the membership breakdown. Terence requests that a bill be put together for graduate special fees with the tentative budget amount to be sent out tonight.
-David asks about GSC sessions for grad students. We will tentatively have it on Mar. 1 before our meeting (Gabby will book the room). Yes to alcohol.
-Pau and Kate are having office hours Tuesdays from 11-noon. Talking to website and flyer designer. Kate asks if there are any pictures of the events that we hold. Tianze says we could ask groups to send pictures from their events and put this in the funding guideline.
- Pau says the new Provost will likely come to a future GSC. We can put together some proposals for what we want. David suggests that the university administrators can connect students with resources better.