A four-year university in Central Oregon presents an extraordinary opportunity to create a culture of teaching, learning and research. Currently, OSU-Cascades has just over 1,000 students but is poised to grow. OSU-Cascades is building a sustainable campus that is fully integrated with the community while retaining the personal, close-knit environment that has worked so well for our students.
OSU-Cascades has purchased land to create a 10-acre campus located near the center of Bend and close to transportation and other amenities. The campus has classrooms, administrative offices and student housing. The 10-acre campus and the nearby Graduate & Research Center together are the first step. The 10-acre campus opened in fall 2016.
In January 2016, OSU-Cascades announced it would proceed with the purchase of 46 acres of property in Bend that adjoins to the university’s new campus. The property purchased is located along Southwest Chandler Avenue and is the location of a former pumice mine. The purchase followed the completion of a due diligence period that included title, environmental, geotechnical and engineering reviews. Additional evaluations included a space analysis, land use review and initial design conceptualizations.
The university planning process also will consider the option of OSU-Cascades adding a nearby 76-acre Deschutes County landfill to the campus footprint. A non-binding Letter of Intent between Deschutes County and OSU-Cascades provides for a two-year a framework for exploring the viability of reclaiming the former demolition landfill as part of the OSU-Cascades campus.
By 2025, we anticipate our west side campus will grow as enrollment reaches between 3,000 and 5,000 students.
Expanding OSU-Cascades has been a collaborative effort involving the City of Bend, Deschutes County, Bend Parks and Recreation, public, private and education partners, area residents and nearby campus neighbors. More than 80 Central Oregonians served on 10 task forces related to the campus expansion. In the fall of 2015, four advisory groups formed to build on the work of these task forces and provide expertise and insight to campus leaders in the areas of arts, culture and enrichment; community integration; sustainability; and health and wellness.
With the completion of two months of collaborative work sessions, the advisory groups assisted in the development of final report from the community to help guide the work of the future design team for long range development. After interviewing three highly regarded design teams, the university chose the team of Page and SERA Architects to lead the planning effort for campus expansion.
The team was introduced to the community in the Spring of 2016, and immediately began gathering feedback around topics of transportation, housing, sustainability and other important aspects for campus design through the summer months. Information about all of these meetings can be found at the LRDP Meeting Materials page.
In October 2016, the design team presented two concepts for each of the potential land scenarios for campus expansion; the 56-acre scenario (which consists of the current 10-acre campus and the recently acquired former pumice mine) and the 132-acre scenario (which adds the former 76-acre Deschutes County demolition landfill to the mix).
This is an exciting time for OSU-Cascades, and we welcome all of Central Oregon to be part of our success.