The cost of athletics

Bearprof
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Chancellor Christ sent this email yesterday. Frustrating how the costs just keep mounting just to stay in place (or less than in place, wrt MBB).

Dear Colleagues,
In my message to campus last March about Cal Athletics, I wrote of our need to improve the training and competition facilities we provide to our women's softball and beach volleyball teams. With the initial analytical work completed, we recently presented preliminary plans for these projects to the Capital Projects Committee. Due to the significant costs associated with these facility improvements, I am writing to explain how we got here, and what needs to happen going forward.
This issue is first and foremost about our values, specifically the value the University places on gender equity, including access to equitable athletics facilities for our male and female student-athletes. In addition, we must maintain compliance with the provisions of Title IX that support and protect those very same values. After conducting a careful review, I am convinced that if we are to remain true to our moral, ethical and legal commitments we must improve two of our women's athletics venues. To be clear, the University is not joining the athletics arms race that is occurring throughout the country but rather is working to provide our existing women's teams with fields, courts, and associated amenities that are similar to what their male counterparts at Cal already enjoy while also meeting our obligations under the law.
Unfortunately, the price tag associated with these necessary facility improvements is extraordinarily high. Initial estimates provided by external consultants with relevant expertise indicate that new softball and beach volleyball facilities will cost approximately $30 million overall. I expect your reaction to this number may be similar to my own: one of concern and dismay. So, I want to share what I have learned about circumstances we cannot wish away.
The current situation is the result of a series of missed opportunities and unfortunate decisions that have accumulated over the years, for which campus and athletics must share responsibility. Simply put, we have a history of insufficient investment in the facilities that support some of our women's sport programs. As a result, we must proceed with these projects.
The high cost of the projects is driven by their scope. When it comes to equity in facilities the moral and legal comparator is the over-arching level and quality of facilities and amenities that we provide to our men's teams. So, in that context I am convinced that temporary and/or incremental improvements will not suffice. While the details are not yet finalized, we need to provide our softball and beach volleyball teams with facilities that are commensurate with our men's facilities. In addition, we must also address long-standing shortcomings in the softball field itself which, in its Strawberry Canyon location, does not have competition-level lighting and does not meet NCAA size requirements for post-season competition. As a result, the entire field will need to be flipped in orientation and enlarged. In addition, there are high costs associated with the University's public-sector project regulatory requirements, as well as high labor expenses for all university-sponsored construction.
After extensive discussion and analysis, I have come to understand that short of discontinuing the softball and beach volleyball programs ---a step I will not take for it stands in dramatic opposition to our values and would likely set the stage for costly litigation - the University must accept the responsibility and the costs necessary to improve the facilities.
There are of course more draconian options, none of which make sense in the context of our university's identity, mission, principles, relationships and objectives. Reducing the scope of our intercollegiate athletics program to a minimal level would come with its own set of significant costs in terms of participation and developmental opportunities for our student-athletes, the ties that connect us as a campus community, alumni relations, philanthropy for academic and athletics programs, and the threat of litigation. Yet, even in the context of a smaller intercollegiate athletics program inequities in need of correction would persist.
These projects have nothing to do with my recent decision to change the "prong" through which our intercollegiate athletics program complies with Title IX's equitable participation mandate. We currently comply through Prong III, under which we must fully and effectively accommodate the interests and abilities of the underrepresented sex. To remain compliant under Prong III, we would be obligated to add women's intercollegiate sports whenever a request to do so meets the requirements for interest and ability set forth in law. For example, in compliance with Prong III, we added Beach Volleyball as an intercollegiate sport in 2014, and it is likely that additional sports would meet the standards in the future. Under Prong I, on the other hand, a university complies with Title IX's participation mandate when it provides athletic participation opportunities that are substantially proportionate to the undergraduate enrollment. I believe that maintaining an athletics program that is substantially proportionate to our undergraduate population is more consistent with Title IX's defining goal of gender equity and comes with the added benefit of better predictability regarding Intercollegiate Athletics' programmatic scope and financial future.
In terms of financing the anticipated costs, we will not use any state funding or student tuition. Rather, the campus will, as it has in the past when confronted by unanticipated capital expenses, draw from what are known as "undesignated bequests." I have also been pleased by the results of initial conversations with a select group of donors who have long histories of supporting both academic and athletics programs. Intercollegiate Athletics believes the time is right for a broad fundraising push for the program that would also raise financial support for these intercollegiate athletic facilities that embody and reflect our commitment to gender equity and continued participation opportunities for women on our campus.
I know that this is all hard news in the context of our ongoing financial challenges and the undeniable opportunity costs no matter what the funding sources are. I wish different decisions had been made in the past, but I cannot turn back the clock. I have repeatedly asked senior administrators and our attorneys to explore additional options, to do more analysis, to scrutinize every aspect of the cost estimates. While I can assure you that I will continue to review every aspect of these projects, the basic contours of what we must do are now in place.

Sincerely,
Carol Christ
59bear
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The subtitle on this might be the high cost of procrastination. The softball facility should have been upgraded years ago when we were coming off a national title and a near repeat. It's doubtful donor interest would ever be higher and, certainly, costs would have been more affordable. Opportunity lost. Sigh!
SFCityBear
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Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
GMP
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SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Things change. People are no longer very interested in track and field. It barely even draws attention here during the Olympics. It's not bad, it's not good, it's not sad. It's just different.
UrsaMajor
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SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Same way I felt when they closed the boxing program. Same general idea--pure competition (albeit with some serious downsides...).

Regardless of these sports, Edwards needs to come down; it's a seismic hazard and too valuable a piece of real estate.
socaliganbear
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This is great news. And the redevelopment of Edwards can't come soon enough. The university has an opportunity to build a new front door to campus. It's a transformational event for the university.
socaliganbear
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59bear said:

The subtitle on this might be the high cost of procrastination. The softball facility should have been upgraded years ago when we were coming off a national title and a near repeat. It's doubtful donor interest would ever be higher and, certainly, costs would have been more affordable. Opportunity lost. Sigh!
This is the exact thing Christ rightfully calls out. You can't keep passing the buck down to the next generation, eventually the bill will be due.
socaltownie
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My jaw is still on the floor about $30 million for a softball facility. I can not even begin to wrap my head around that.
socaliganbear
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socaltownie said:

My jaw is still on the floor about $30 million for a softball facility. I can not even begin to wrap my head around that.


And a volleyball facility. Y'all realize we spent 7M on FH?
wifeisafurd
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socaltownie said:

My jaw is still on the floor about $30 million for a softball facility. I can not even begin to wrap my head around that.
When I represented California pubic entities on real estate matters, they assumed it cost double the amount for them to build something than a private party. Prevailing wage laws, and an outdated statutory bidding process which invites change orders, are the main culprits. The clients also assumed it would take 50% more time for a public project than the same construction as private project, which is disconcerting when you consider I was representing engineering-based entities that knew what they were doing, and did the design work in house. This is no longer Robert Mulholland's world.

BTW, it should be apparent that this problem exists for Cal beyond athletic facilities. Like the cost of new dorms. Further I agree with the Chancellor the first priority with facilities is going to have to be women's facilities. You can't build a Taj Mahal basketball facility and have women changing in make-shift areas. Otherwise, some Federal judge will be in charge of your athletic department.
CALiforniALUM
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Christ rambles. Shows weakness.
upsetof86
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CALiforniALUM said:

Christ rambles. Shows weakness.


I always feel like we have mini strategies to fix crises. Very reactive. I wish someone would lay it all out there so our athletics problem could be reduced to a few holistic strategies. Given a clear mission no matter how large or daunting I am convinced we as an alum community could meet the challenge, once and for all so to speak.

Market direction, Cost structure/drivers, revenue streams, competitive benchmarks, unique issues, etc. Then we decide who we want to be, strategy to take, and go get it done. Just feel like there's not enough vision all due respect to Christ.
GMP
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upsetof86 said:

CALiforniALUM said:

Christ rambles. Shows weakness.


I always feel like we have mini strategies to fix crises. Very reactive. I wish someone would lay it all out there so our athletics problem could be reduced to a few holistic strategies. Given a clear mission no matter how large or daunting I am convinced we as an alum community could meet the challenge, once and for all so to speak.

Market direction, Cost structure/drivers, revenue streams, competitive benchmarks, unique issues, etc. Then we decide who we want to be, strategy to take, and go get it done. Just feel like there's not enough vision all due respect to Christ.
Read her letter again. I'm not sure how you can read that and make a post like this. I'm not saying she has done it or will do it, but she is certainly trying to do what you ask for: Looking at the big picture. Getting out in front of problems before they become bigger problems. Biting the bullet now to avoid something worse down the road. That's what she's doing when she explains the switch from Title IX prong III to prong I:

Quote:

We currently comply through Prong III, under which we must fully and effectively accommodate the interests and abilities of the underrepresented sex. To remain compliant under Prong III, we would be obligated to add women's intercollegiate sports whenever a request to do so meets the requirements for interest and ability set forth in law. For example, in compliance with Prong III, we added Beach Volleyball as an intercollegiate sport in 2014, and it is likely that additional sports would meet the standards in the future. Under Prong I, on the other hand, a university complies with Title IX's participation mandate when it provides athletic participation opportunities that are substantially proportionate to the undergraduate enrollment. I believe that maintaining an athletics program that is substantially proportionate to our undergraduate population is more consistent with Title IX's defining goal of gender equity and comes with the added benefit of better predictability regarding Intercollegiate Athletics' programmatic scope and financial future.

upsetof86
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GMP said:

upsetof86 said:

CALiforniALUM said:

Christ rambles. Shows weakness.


I always feel like we have mini strategies to fix crises. Very reactive. I wish someone would lay it all out there so our athletics problem could be reduced to a few holistic strategies. Given a clear mission no matter how large or daunting I am convinced we as an alum community could meet the challenge, once and for all so to speak.

Market direction, Cost structure/drivers, revenue streams, competitive benchmarks, unique issues, etc. Then we decide who we want to be, strategy to take, and go get it done. Just feel like there's not enough vision all due respect to Christ.
Read her letter again. I'm not sure how you can read that and make a post like this. I'm not saying she has done it or will do it, but she is certainly trying to do what you ask for: Looking at the big picture. Getting out in front of problems before they become bigger problems. Biting the bullet now to avoid something worse down the road. That's what she's doing when she explains the switch from Title IX prong III to prong I:

Quote:

We currently comply through Prong III, under which we must fully and effectively accommodate the interests and abilities of the underrepresented sex. To remain compliant under Prong III, we would be obligated to add women's intercollegiate sports whenever a request to do so meets the requirements for interest and ability set forth in law. For example, in compliance with Prong III, we added Beach Volleyball as an intercollegiate sport in 2014, and it is likely that additional sports would meet the standards in the future. Under Prong I, on the other hand, a university complies with Title IX's participation mandate when it provides athletic participation opportunities that are substantially proportionate to the undergraduate enrollment. I believe that maintaining an athletics program that is substantially proportionate to our undergraduate population is more consistent with Title IX's defining goal of gender equity and comes with the added benefit of better predictability regarding Intercollegiate Athletics' programmatic scope and financial future.




I tried to acknlowedge that she lays out a (mini) strategic viewpoint, about this particular situation, tries to map it to our values for gender equity, that this is the root of this problem...so when the punchline comes it feels like, dont grouse, good things cost we must pay. Well I am convinced only we are jammed up and can't escape our Title IX obligations any longer. Prong I or III I don't feel like we see enough to feel like this approach will prevent or limit these kinds of costs happening more often than they feel like they should, and more expensively than they should. Its a letter that seems to frame the problem somehwhat narrowly by the statutes is how it comes across to me.

And for this particular issue, maybe that's all there can be said. Its done, no bigger view of things solves the immediacy of this. So my wish is that somewhere, at sometime a bigger view of this as part of a bigger view of many pieces is laid out when it comes to athletics and financing it.
socaliganbear
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CALiforniALUM said:

Christ rambles. Shows weakness.

I didn't get this at all.
calumnus
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GMP said:

SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Things change. People are no longer very interested in track and field. It barely even draws attention here during the Olympics. It's not bad, it's not good, it's not sad. It's just different.


I hated NBC's coverage of the last couple Olympics. THey actually showed a tape of a women's beach volleyball semi rather than show the men's 100 meter Final with Usain Bolt (fastest man in history of humans) live!!!!
wifeisafurd
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upsetof86 said:

CALiforniALUM said:

Christ rambles. Shows weakness.


I always feel like we have mini strategies to fix crises. Very reactive. I wish someone would lay it all out there so our athletics problem could be reduced to a few holistic strategies. Given a clear mission no matter how large or daunting I am convinced we as an alum community could meet the challenge, once and for all so to speak.

Market direction, Cost structure/drivers, revenue streams, competitive benchmarks, unique issues, etc. Then we decide who we want to be, strategy to take, and go get it done. Just feel like there's not enough vision all due respect to Christ.
I don't get this. Campus has huge (in terms of dollars and political exposure) initiatives regarding student housing and expansion to accommodate higher numbers of students which are long overdue, we have all sorts due diligence on what to do about sports (actual movement) after an insane number of studies, committees, etc., there was a big production on free speech and so far this has finally been a quiet period on campus despite national politics, she has a huge initiative on moving forward academic on data science. The woman has been Chancellor for how long?
UrsaMajor
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upsetof86 said:

GMP said:

upsetof86 said:

CALiforniALUM said:

Christ rambles. Shows weakness.


I always feel like we have mini strategies to fix crises. Very reactive. I wish someone would lay it all out there so our athletics problem could be reduced to a few holistic strategies. Given a clear mission no matter how large or daunting I am convinced we as an alum community could meet the challenge, once and for all so to speak.

Market direction, Cost structure/drivers, revenue streams, competitive benchmarks, unique issues, etc. Then we decide who we want to be, strategy to take, and go get it done. Just feel like there's not enough vision all due respect to Christ.
Read her letter again. I'm not sure how you can read that and make a post like this. I'm not saying she has done it or will do it, but she is certainly trying to do what you ask for: Looking at the big picture. Getting out in front of problems before they become bigger problems. Biting the bullet now to avoid something worse down the road. That's what she's doing when she explains the switch from Title IX prong III to prong I:

Quote:

We currently comply through Prong III, under which we must fully and effectively accommodate the interests and abilities of the underrepresented sex. To remain compliant under Prong III, we would be obligated to add women's intercollegiate sports whenever a request to do so meets the requirements for interest and ability set forth in law. For example, in compliance with Prong III, we added Beach Volleyball as an intercollegiate sport in 2014, and it is likely that additional sports would meet the standards in the future. Under Prong I, on the other hand, a university complies with Title IX's participation mandate when it provides athletic participation opportunities that are substantially proportionate to the undergraduate enrollment. I believe that maintaining an athletics program that is substantially proportionate to our undergraduate population is more consistent with Title IX's defining goal of gender equity and comes with the added benefit of better predictability regarding Intercollegiate Athletics' programmatic scope and financial future.




I tried to acknlowedge that she lays out a (mini) strategic viewpoint, about this particular situation, tries to map it to our values for gender equity, that this is the root of this problem...so when the punchline comes it feels like, dont grouse, good things cost we must pay. Well I am convinced only we are jammed up and can't escape our Title IX obligations any longer. Prong I or III I don't feel like we see enough to feel like this approach will prevent or limit these kinds of costs happening more often than they feel like they should, and more expensively than they should. Its a letter that seems to frame the problem somehwhat narrowly by the statutes is how it comes across to me.

And for this particular issue, maybe that's all there can be said. Its done, no bigger view of things solves the immediacy of this. So my wish is that somewhere, at sometime a bigger view of this as part of a bigger view of many pieces is laid out when it comes to athletics and financing it.
A bigger view meaning just what exactly? She has indicated that we have a moral and legal obligation toward gender equity in sports. She is moving to correct the inequity. She has also indicated in other forums her vision of the role of sports in the university as a whole. Do you mean the role of sports in the evolution of the universe? She has indicated that much of our problem can be laid at the feet of prior errors/procrastination and that she will no longer delay. What else do you want?
SFCityBear
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GMP said:

SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Things change. People are no longer very interested in track and field. It barely even draws attention here during the Olympics. It's not bad, it's not good, it's not sad. It's just different.
Track and Field attendance is just about where it always has been, according to this article:

http://www.perelman-pioneer.com/ncaa-track-field-as-good-as-the-%e2%80%9cgood-old-days%e2%80%9d/

And if people being interested in a sport is your barometer for what sports Cal should be supporting, then many or most of Cal's minor sports could be candidates for the chopping block. What is next? People's interest in baseball is waning some, so I guess Cal's baseball diamond is perhaps next in line in danger of the bulldozer. Then there is crew, tennis, golf, not to mention lacrosse, field hockey et al. Do we have a skateboarding team? Now that one could be really popular.

And if "here" means Berkeley and what is interesting to people in Berkeley, since when is that a barometer for what is interesting to most Americans?





SFCityBear
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socaliganbear said:

This is great news. And the redevelopment of Edwards can't come soon enough. The university has an opportunity to build a new front door to campus. It's a transformational event for the university.
I'm hoping this was written with tongue well into cheek, and there are no plans to tear down Sather Gate.
socaliganbear
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SFCityBear said:

socaliganbear said:

This is great news. And the redevelopment of Edwards can't come soon enough. The university has an opportunity to build a new front door to campus. It's a transformational event for the university.
I'm hoping this was written with tongue well into cheek, and there are no plans to tear down Sather Gate.
No.
SFCityBear
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UrsaMajor said:

SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Same way I felt when they closed the boxing program. Same general idea--pure competition (albeit with some serious downsides...).

Regardless of these sports, Edwards needs to come down; it's a seismic hazard and too valuable a piece of real estate.
If it is a seismic hazard, then remove the hazard, and build some new seating. Far less expensive than putting up a new building. And it looks like Cal has no other suitable venue for the track and field team to practice and hold meets.

Have the powers that be even decided what to build on that valuable piece of real estate? What department or what panel or what person has convinced the administration it needs a new building as a monument to themselves? What is the need for a new building?

The Berkeley campus was once an idyllic site for a campus, rivaling the Yales, UCLAs, and Stanfords, and campuses more beautiful than those. It was a little oasis for study situated in the middle of an urban environment. Campus planners have not made a good decision since the 1950s, IMO, when they built the Student Union, the Cafeteria, the Alumni House, and the first modern dormitories on the South Side. That was the zenith of modern planning at UC. Then came the abortion of a design, Wurster Hall, ironically named after a wonderful architect, and built to educate society's future architects. It has been downhill from there, aesthetically, as concrete monolith after monolith has appeared, and cluttered up the campus. Cal is becoming less like Yale as a campus and more like Columbia in New York City (where I attended for a spell). I have more green in my yard than Columbia has (Well, almost). Going from Cal to Columbia was a huge shock. I felt oppressed, suffocated, with no fresh air, no trees around. Nothing but unfriendly buildings, and I'm beginning to feel that way on the Cal campus. I hope Cal will think twice before they demolish Edwards to put up just another building.





UrsaMajor
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SFCity,

I agree with you about much of the architecture on campus; however, you are dead wrong about the need for buildings. The student body has grown considerably in the past few years, and there is an urgent need for classroom space. Many students are turned away from lower division courses every semester because there aren't enough lecture halls to hold larger classes. There aren't enough seminar rooms as well. In addition the need for student housing is acute. At present, Cal is able to house only 22% of undergraduates (less than the freshman class) and 8% of graduate students. And there is insufficient private housing in Berkeley to take up the slack. In short, the university has a dire need for classroom space and for housing. Surprising as it may be, there are those who think the educational mission of the campus is as important than track and field.
OaktownBear
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SFCityBear said:

UrsaMajor said:

SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Same way I felt when they closed the boxing program. Same general idea--pure competition (albeit with some serious downsides...).

Regardless of these sports, Edwards needs to come down; it's a seismic hazard and too valuable a piece of real estate.
If it is a seismic hazard, then remove the hazard, and build some new seating. Far less expensive than putting up a new building. And it looks like Cal has no other suitable venue for the track and field team to practice and hold meets.

Have the powers that be even decided what to build on that valuable piece of real estate? What department or what panel or what person has convinced the administration it needs a new building as a monument to themselves? What is the need for a new building?

The Berkeley campus was once an idyllic site for a campus, rivaling the Yales, UCLAs, and Stanfords, and campuses more beautiful than those. It was a little oasis for study situated in the middle of an urban environment. Campus planners have not made a good decision since the 1950s, IMO, when they built the Student Union, the Cafeteria, the Alumni House, and the first modern dormitories on the South Side. That was the zenith of modern planning at UC. Then came the abortion of a design, Wurster Hall, ironically named after a wonderful architect, and built to educate society's future architects. It has been downhill from there, aesthetically, as concrete monolith after monolith has appeared, and cluttered up the campus. Cal is becoming less like Yale as a campus and more like Columbia in New York City (where I attended for a spell). I have more green in my yard than Columbia has (Well, almost). Going from Cal to Columbia was a huge shock. I felt oppressed, suffocated, with no fresh air, no trees around. Nothing but unfriendly buildings, and I'm beginning to feel that way on the Cal campus. I hope Cal will think twice before they demolish Edwards to put up just another building.






SF, I have to disagree with you on a number of points.

Removing a seismic hazard is rarely far cheaper than building a new building and can be far more expensive. Cal could have torn Memorial down and built a much more modern facility for a fraction of the cost, especially if it changed locations.

I also love the idyllic parts of the Cal campus. I think when you imply that the university doesn't need the land you are not considering the reality of the exploding student population. There are 30% more students today than when I was in school. I'd hazard a guess (admittedly pure speculation) that it is double from your time if not more. It is great to be idyllic, but you have to have the facilities to support the student population.

I agree with you about much of the architectural planning that occurred after you left, but I think you'd find that almost everything you'd find objectionable was built in the 60's and 70's when architecture in the country as a whole pretty much sucked (Wurster in 1964 for instance. Evans in 1971). I agree that those are a blight on the campus (although they were there when I got there). In fairness, though, the newer projects have been much different. The business school is beautiful. When they needed a new library they came up with a creative solution that actually restored green space.

I think you are also arguing against yourself a bit here because Edwards is not idyllic or attractive. Frankly a gigantic space taken up by ugly walls with large stands rising above them that creates a large barrier on the west side of campus that makes that section largely a ghost town. I will bet that what replaces it will be greener, more idyllic, and definitely more accessible to the average student.

All things eventually get gone. Edwards had its day. It should hold a special place in Cal history, but unfortunately that is where it needs to be. On an urban campus of over 40K, facilities are needed somewhere. Cal simply cannot continue to devote such a large area of campus to the near exclusive use of around two tenths of one percent of the student body.
ColoradoBear
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socaliganbear said:

socaltownie said:

My jaw is still on the floor about $30 million for a softball facility. I can not even begin to wrap my head around that.


And a volleyball facility. Y'all realize we spent 7M on FH?
Thought I saw somewhere that the sand volleyball facility was ~$5 million and the softball facility was ~$25 million.

Check out what Oregon did for their new softball stadium for a mere $17 million:

https://goducks.com/sports/2015/6/9/210141291.aspx

Field Hockey could have had a serviceable field for a lot less than $7 million if the campus had planned better. Plus a good amount of the $7 million was for FH expenses not that were directly in the cost of rebuilding Underhill.
BeachedBear
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I'm guessing the $25 Million is loaded for expense beyond simply construction. UCB Facilities doesn't want to be on the hook for picking up the maintenance tab. I wouldn't be surprised if there is a 15%-20% load beyond that as well (for various expected costs over the life of the facility).

Similar to the lifetime cost of home ownership is SIGNIFICANTLY higher than the purchase price.
socaliganbear
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ColoradoBear said:

socaliganbear said:

socaltownie said:

My jaw is still on the floor about $30 million for a softball facility. I can not even begin to wrap my head around that.


And a volleyball facility. Y'all realize we spent 7M on FH?
Thought I saw somewhere that the sand volleyball facility was ~$5 million and the softball facility was ~$25 million.

Check out what Oregon did for their new softball stadium for a mere $17 million:

https://goducks.com/sports/2015/6/9/210141291.aspx

Field Hockey could have had a serviceable field for a lot less than $7 million if the campus had planned better. Plus a good amount of the $7 million was for FH expenses not that were directly in the cost of rebuilding Underhill.



Think Oregon's costs would be higher if they'd built it 6 years after they did? Or if they'd built it on a fault line in a canyon? Or if they'd built it in the Bay Area (with all it entails) and not in Eugene?
ColoradoBear
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socaliganbear said:

ColoradoBear said:

socaliganbear said:

socaltownie said:

My jaw is still on the floor about $30 million for a softball facility. I can not even begin to wrap my head around that.


And a volleyball facility. Y'all realize we spent 7M on FH?
Thought I saw somewhere that the sand volleyball facility was ~$5 million and the softball facility was ~$25 million.

Check out what Oregon did for their new softball stadium for a mere $17 million:

https://goducks.com/sports/2015/6/9/210141291.aspx

Field Hockey could have had a serviceable field for a lot less than $7 million if the campus had planned better. Plus a good amount of the $7 million was for FH expenses not that were directly in the cost of rebuilding Underhill.



Think Oregon's costs would be higher if they'd built it 6 years after they did? Or if they'd built it on a fault line in a canyon? Or if they'd built it in the Bay Area (with all it entails) and not in Eugene?
All true, but I bet they could also have built something serviceable for $5-10 million and still have it be better than evans diamond (which is the equivalent men's facility to softball).
socaliganbear
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ColoradoBear said:

socaliganbear said:

ColoradoBear said:

socaliganbear said:

socaltownie said:

My jaw is still on the floor about $30 million for a softball facility. I can not even begin to wrap my head around that.


And a volleyball facility. Y'all realize we spent 7M on FH?
Thought I saw somewhere that the sand volleyball facility was ~$5 million and the softball facility was ~$25 million.

Check out what Oregon did for their new softball stadium for a mere $17 million:

https://goducks.com/sports/2015/6/9/210141291.aspx

Field Hockey could have had a serviceable field for a lot less than $7 million if the campus had planned better. Plus a good amount of the $7 million was for FH expenses not that were directly in the cost of rebuilding Underhill.



Think Oregon's costs would be higher if they'd built it 6 years after they did? Or if they'd built it on a fault line in a canyon? Or if they'd built it in the Bay Area (with all it entails) and not in Eugene?
All true, but I bet they could also have built something serviceable for $5 million and still have it be better than evans diamond (which is the equivalent men's facility to softball).


I doubt that's how you prove equitable investment in facilities. Probably more along the lines of, how do your current investments in capital projects compare for men and women? Bare bones on both sides or just women? I highly doubt t it's a tit for tat with a men's counter part. Otherwise we'd prob leave beach volley as is.
wifeisafurd
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SFCityBear said:

UrsaMajor said:

SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Same way I felt when they closed the boxing program. Same general idea--pure competition (albeit with some serious downsides...).

Regardless of these sports, Edwards needs to come down; it's a seismic hazard and too valuable a piece of real estate.
If it is a seismic hazard, then remove the hazard, and build some new seating. Far less expensive than putting up a new building. And it looks like Cal has no other suitable venue for the track and field team to practice and hold meets.

Have the powers that be even decided what to build on that valuable piece of real estate? What department or what panel or what person has convinced the administration it needs a new building as a monument to themselves? What is the need for a new building?

The Berkeley campus was once an idyllic site for a campus, rivaling the Yales, UCLAs, and Stanfords, and campuses more beautiful than those. It was a little oasis for study situated in the middle of an urban environment. Campus planners have not made a good decision since the 1950s, IMO, when they built the Student Union, the Cafeteria, the Alumni House, and the first modern dormitories on the South Side. That was the zenith of modern planning at UC. Then came the abortion of a design, Wurster Hall, ironically named after a wonderful architect, and built to educate society's future architects. It has been downhill from there, aesthetically, as concrete monolith after monolith has appeared, and cluttered up the campus. Cal is becoming less like Yale as a campus and more like Columbia in New York City (where I attended for a spell). I have more green in my yard than Columbia has (Well, almost). Going from Cal to Columbia was a huge shock. I felt oppressed, suffocated, with no fresh air, no trees around. Nothing but unfriendly buildings, and I'm beginning to feel that way on the Cal campus. I hope Cal will think twice before they demolish Edwards to put up just another building.






It is valuable space, and is bing dedicated to the mission of the University. I was one of those who though they should do something like USC, which has restaurants and retail for both campus stakeholders (students, faculty and admin) to use and to generate revenue and that a school with deficits like Cal could rely use. However, there is other property owned by the University to be used for this purpose. Right now Cal has a student housing crises and class room shortage that is impacting its mission. Moreover, Campus paid Athletics a significant sum for property which requires a costly demolition.
socaliganbear
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wifeisafurd said:

SFCityBear said:

UrsaMajor said:

SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Same way I felt when they closed the boxing program. Same general idea--pure competition (albeit with some serious downsides...).

Regardless of these sports, Edwards needs to come down; it's a seismic hazard and too valuable a piece of real estate.
If it is a seismic hazard, then remove the hazard, and build some new seating. Far less expensive than putting up a new building. And it looks like Cal has no other suitable venue for the track and field team to practice and hold meets.

Have the powers that be even decided what to build on that valuable piece of real estate? What department or what panel or what person has convinced the administration it needs a new building as a monument to themselves? What is the need for a new building?

The Berkeley campus was once an idyllic site for a campus, rivaling the Yales, UCLAs, and Stanfords, and campuses more beautiful than those. It was a little oasis for study situated in the middle of an urban environment. Campus planners have not made a good decision since the 1950s, IMO, when they built the Student Union, the Cafeteria, the Alumni House, and the first modern dormitories on the South Side. That was the zenith of modern planning at UC. Then came the abortion of a design, Wurster Hall, ironically named after a wonderful architect, and built to educate society's future architects. It has been downhill from there, aesthetically, as concrete monolith after monolith has appeared, and cluttered up the campus. Cal is becoming less like Yale as a campus and more like Columbia in New York City (where I attended for a spell). I have more green in my yard than Columbia has (Well, almost). Going from Cal to Columbia was a huge shock. I felt oppressed, suffocated, with no fresh air, no trees around. Nothing but unfriendly buildings, and I'm beginning to feel that way on the Cal campus. I hope Cal will think twice before they demolish Edwards to put up just another building.






It is valuable space, and is bing dedicated to the mission of the University. I was one of those who though they should do something like USC, which has restaurants and retail for both campus stakeholders (students, faculty and admin) to use and to generate revenue and that a school with deficits like Cal could rely use. However, there is other property owned by the University to be used for this purpose. Right now Cal has a student housing crises and class room shortage that is impacting its mission. Moreover, Campus paid Athletics a significant sum for property which requires a costly demolition.
Which property is this? PP/Oxford?
UrsaMajor
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socaliganbear said:

wifeisafurd said:

SFCityBear said:

UrsaMajor said:

SFCityBear said:

Oh, how wonderful! We get new facilities for softball and beach volleyball (BEACH volleyball?) while at the same time dismantling Edwards Field and throwing the Men's and Women's Track and Field Program, with its long tradition and history, further down the dumper? Remember track and field? That used to be the simplest, the purest of form of sports: Who is fastest, who can jump the highest, who can throw an object the farthest? Just about all but gone from Berkeley forever. Really tragic.
Same way I felt when they closed the boxing program. Same general idea--pure competition (albeit with some serious downsides...).

Regardless of these sports, Edwards needs to come down; it's a seismic hazard and too valuable a piece of real estate.
If it is a seismic hazard, then remove the hazard, and build some new seating. Far less expensive than putting up a new building. And it looks like Cal has no other suitable venue for the track and field team to practice and hold meets.

Have the powers that be even decided what to build on that valuable piece of real estate? What department or what panel or what person has convinced the administration it needs a new building as a monument to themselves? What is the need for a new building?

The Berkeley campus was once an idyllic site for a campus, rivaling the Yales, UCLAs, and Stanfords, and campuses more beautiful than those. It was a little oasis for study situated in the middle of an urban environment. Campus planners have not made a good decision since the 1950s, IMO, when they built the Student Union, the Cafeteria, the Alumni House, and the first modern dormitories on the South Side. That was the zenith of modern planning at UC. Then came the abortion of a design, Wurster Hall, ironically named after a wonderful architect, and built to educate society's future architects. It has been downhill from there, aesthetically, as concrete monolith after monolith has appeared, and cluttered up the campus. Cal is becoming less like Yale as a campus and more like Columbia in New York City (where I attended for a spell). I have more green in my yard than Columbia has (Well, almost). Going from Cal to Columbia was a huge shock. I felt oppressed, suffocated, with no fresh air, no trees around. Nothing but unfriendly buildings, and I'm beginning to feel that way on the Cal campus. I hope Cal will think twice before they demolish Edwards to put up just another building.






It is valuable space, and is bing dedicated to the mission of the University. I was one of those who though they should do something like USC, which has restaurants and retail for both campus stakeholders (students, faculty and admin) to use and to generate revenue and that a school with deficits like Cal could rely use. However, there is other property owned by the University to be used for this purpose. Right now Cal has a student housing crises and class room shortage that is impacting its mission. Moreover, Campus paid Athletics a significant sum for property which requires a costly demolition.
Which property is this? PP/Oxford?
Other property includes that tract on Oxford that currently is used for agricultural experimentation, as well as the Richmond Field Station. The new Berkeley Way building (Psychology, Public Health, Education) will have retail (restaurant for starters) on the ground floor, clinic on the 2nd floor and offices/classrooms on 3-6.

As for the question of equitable facilities--it doesn't have to be equal spending (obviously Memorial is more than any facility dedicated to women's sports), but the facilities need to be somewhat comparable: There are locker rooms in Memorial and softball/beach volleyball change either down the hill or in trailers/tents. That's not equitable. Softball needs seating for a certain # (I think it is 5000) to be eligible to host playoffs; Memorial can host anything. Things like this.
HoopDreams
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could they maintain the track and soccer fields by just shrinking the footprint of the stadium?
right now, the seating capacity is 20X what is needed. If the entire field was shifted, the seating reduced, and green space facing south was utilized better, it could probably support student housing.
DavisBear
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It seems like by removing the stands on the east side, you could push the facility that way. That would leave room for housing along the street.
Uthaithani
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Of course Christ stubbornly refuses to do the one sensible thing - cancel these sports and the offsetting men's programs. $30mil is really $60mil or more - we know how these projects go, especially at Cal. And that's just to create the stupid structures, not the annual operating expenses.

This is why I've stopped giving money to the university. They waste it on stupid Olympic sports while shooting for mediocrity or less in the major sports that drive the bus.

Nothing's going to change. Cal will continue to suck at FB and MBB and short-change those sports while spending donors' money on garbage like this. Screw Cal.
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