MADISON, Wis. – The State Building Commission today approved Governor Scott Walker’s recommendations for the 2011-13 Capital Budget. The budget provides long-term investments in new University of Wisconsin System facilities that will enhance teaching, research, and student life across the state.

“This is an excellent Capital Budget that represents a strong partnership between the UW System and the State of Wisconsin,” said UW System President Kevin P. Reilly. “It is the result of solid planning, tough decisions, and thorough priority-setting. Governor Walker and members of the Commission recognize the importance of these facilities to our core UW mission.”

The approved budget follows recommendations submitted by the UW System Board of Regents. Each budget cycle, UW System staff work with staff at the State Department of Administration to submit requests that fit within state budget constraints, recommending to the Regents a list of high-priority projects that match predicted funding levels.

The 2011-13 budget includes 20 UW projects funded with $229.6 million of program revenue and gifts, with no taxpayer support. Included in this total are:

  • $79.7 million for the renovation of nine outdated residence halls and three dining halls at six UW System campuses.  These double-occupancy halls provide housing for the majority of students living on campus.
  • $12.25 million for the purchase of a renovated facility in the Pabst Brewery section of Milwaukee, for the UW-Milwaukee School of Public Health, made possible through a generous gift from the late Joseph Zilber.
  • $76.8 million ($49.2 athletics revenues, $27.6 gifts) for the Badger Performance Center at UW-Madison, which will house programs for the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics, the College of Engineering, and a clinic operated by the UW Hospital and Clinics (UWHC).

The budget also includes $72 million worth of State-funded UW building projects:

  • $17 million (generated by savings from projects in 2009) for Carlson Hall classroom renovation at UW-Whitewater.
  • $5 million for the highly successful Systemwide classroom renovation program that modernizes existing outdated classrooms on every campus.
  • $50 million for renovations of aging academic facilities at UW-Stout, UW-Oshkosh, UW-Platteville, and UW-Superior.  These facilities, which are up to 90 years old, will be renewed for another 30 to 50 years of life.  The UW System has over 30 such projects in the pipeline.

“This $50-million investment – a new element of UW’s capital budget – provides a flexible pool of funds that the University will use for high-priority projects. This will decrease our maintenance backlog, while demonstrating our stewardship of public facilities and our ability to manage resources wisely,” said David L. Miller, Associate Vice President of Capital Planning for UW System.

The budget provides $180 million for all state agencies to share to address a backlog of maintenance projects that total over $1 billion.  In addition, the budget includes $100 million of program revenue bonding authority for energy efficiency projects, which will be funded through energy savings.

Five UW System projects were enumerated with state funding in the last legislative session for funding in 2011-13:

  • $44.0 million for the UW-Eau Claire Education Building
  • $67.4 million for the Wisconsin Institute for Medical Research (WIMR) at UW-Madison
  • $22.5 million for the School of Human Ecology addition/renovation at UW-Madison
  • $38.5 million for utilities at UW-Madison
  • $50.0 million for the UW-Milwaukee Master Plan Initiative

The Governor and Building Commission members today authorized two additional projects that had been requested by the UW System Board of Regents:

  • $52.2 million for the UW-Madison School of Nursing ($34.8 million GFSB from a reduction in UW-Madison’s allocation of All Agency maintenance funding over two biennia, plus $17.4 million in gifts)
  • Advance enumeration in 2013-15 for the UW-River Falls Health and Human Performance facility – a project that Regents have requested in every biennium since 1999.

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David Giroux
UW System
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