Oregon State University - Cascades today took a step closer to developing a four-year undergraduate campus on a 10-acre parcel it owns in southwest Bend, with the approval of a site plan application by the City of Bend's hearings officer.
Approval of the plan by Hearings Officer Ken Helm includes certain conditions recommended by the City's planning department, including public road crossing improvements and parking monitoring enhancements. The hearings officer's review process included public meetings that took place in early June, when Helm heard input from about 250 community members who testified or submitted written comments.
Plans for the campus site, which is located at the intersection of Southwest Century and Southwest Chandler avenues, include plans for buildings for academic space, dining and student housing, as well as for outdoor gathering spaces, parking and pathways. The facilities will accommodate a maximum of 1,960 students, faculty and staff, which reflects an additional 849 students than are currently taking classes from OSU-Cascades.
We appreciate the City's and Mr. Helm's thorough review of our application, as well as the extensive community input regarding the site plan, said OSU-Cascades Vice President Becky Johnson.
Kelly Sparks, associate vice president for finance and strategic planning, who has led both the application effort on behalf of the branch campus and many of the community planning meetings said, We look forward to engaging in continued community collaboration as we develop the comprehensive undergraduate and research institution that has been long sought by Central Oregon residents and regional leaders.
OSU-Cascades officials anticipate the new campus will open in fall 2016 for undergraduates. Graduate programs will be conducted at the Graduate & Research Center, which is located a half-mile from the new undergraduate campus. University officials plan to accommodate the first freshmen in fall 2015 using classrooms in both Cascades Hall, where undergraduates currently take classes, and in the Graduate & Research Center while construction occurs on the new campus site.
The site approval marks another exciting step towards a four-year university for Bend and Central Oregon, said Johnson.
Posted September 2, 2014.