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Space Assessment

Meeting Notes


Current Master Plan - 2010

Previous Master Plan - 2002



This Space Assessment Report is part of the Campus Master Plan Document created for the Eastern Illinois University campus. It provides the space requirements for all proposed building space in the Campus Master Plan, including new buildings, renovations, and additions. It serves as the basis for developing a master plan to illustrate how the growth of all departments can be accommodated with reallocation of existing space and addition of new space.


Specific objectives for the campus master plan as addressed by the CMPC:

Create a sustainability-based master plan.
Reduced car trips/ walkable campus
Reduced dependency on fossil fuels by using renewable energy
Reduce/ recycle waste
Natural storm water drainage to reduce infrastructure impact
Plan a highly sustainable, flexible science building “on display” for campus and community populations
Support Integrative Learning
Places where faculty and students can meet informally
Outreach programs in the community
Embrace a transparent

Guiding Principles

These principles will establish a framework for the development of the Campus Master Plan, creating a mental picture of the University as we would like it to become:

Maintain the current student/faculty/staff population numbers.
Create a unified theme/approach in which tradition is evident and respected.
Build in flexibility for addressing current needs and future growth.
Retain defining attributes of the campus.
Create a cohesive physical identity that weaves the campus into the community and region.
Expect and deliver a great Campus Master Plan – one that offers a source of pride for the EIU and Charleston community.
Plan for the Phased Physical Growth of the Campus in three increments: 5 years, 10 years, and Ultimate Development.
Coordinate Campus Planning with the concurrent Athletics Master Planning.

Data Gathering

The LSH/PSAD Team collected academic information, including an itemized schedule of courses, number of students enrolled per course, weekly student contact hours and room assignments. This document represents enrollment data for the spring 2010 semester.

The EIU Space Management Database was formatted for space assessment use.
A departmental structure was provided, identifying distribution of responsibility and key leaders to be interviewed. A questionnaire was prepared and submitted to these leaders, including the department heads of the 41 selected departments. With departmental help, the database was corrected wherever missing or outdated information existed.

Detailed information requested:

Existing space and staff assigned per room per Department
Proposed space and staff needs
General comments

The site plan with utility overlays was provided by Facilities Planning and Management (FPM) staff in AutoCAD format, from which a 3-D base sheet was developed. This base sheet will be used to graphically identify existing site issues and opportunities


LSH/ PSAD conducted a series of interviews, beginning with a Visioning session, with key University Leaders and every Department Head involved in the program to review and refine the data. This process included both analyses of existing conditions and the proposed parametric criteria for calculating space needs. These criteria were developed based on standards previously adopted by EIU, tempered by the experience of the LSH/ PSAD team, and in consideration of nationally recognized standards used by peer institutions of EIU.

General classroom space

The basic method adopted for calculating general classroom space is the Assignable Square Footage per Weekly Student Contact Hour formula.

Assignable square footage (ASF) is the useable space inside classrooms, offices, etc. It does not include circulation (corridors and stairs) and building service space (restrooms, janitor closets), or the area taken by walls or columns.

Weekly Student Contact Hours (WSCH) are the number of total hours all students spend in scheduled instruction during one week.

Departmental Space

The detailed departmental space calculation was based on interviewing each department to identify and justify additional space requested. Because it is the vision of the University to maintain its current total enrollment over a 10-15 year planning horizon, departments were instructed to limit their space requests accordingly. This space was identified as “Proposed Program” space. 

The Steering Committee then met in a day-long session to finalize the space upon which the Master Plan would be based. This space was identified as the “Target Program” space. The initial Target Program Space List for the 41 Departments is a baseline calculation assuming all departments would move into new space following the parametric space criteria approved by the CMPC.

The final Target Program Space List will be adjusted on whether a department is planned to move into new space, into existing space vacated by others, or expanding in place. For instance, a department with small but otherwise functional offices will not move into new, standard-size offices unless the department is moving into new space - either in a new building or in a totally renovated existing building.

Space Calculation

At its current enrollment of 11,002 full time equivalent (FTE) students, EIU has 1,939,169 assignable square feet (ASF) of space, including residential. Excluding general classroom space, the 41 selected Departments are assigned 423,609 ASF or 22% of that total. Critical space shortages exist in teaching lab, research lab and selected departmental office areas. While no significant growth is anticipated for the student population, many of the teaching lab spaces are currently undersized, seriously outmoded or lack adequate support facilities. In the office category, people are crammed into small spaces or share offices designed for single occupancy. There is very little support space for files, copiers, work areas or general storage.

Some buildings, particularly Life Science and Old Main, are severely overcrowded and need major renovation. Others, like Coleman and Physical Science, are in good physical condition but also severely overcrowded and, depending on the final choice of use, will need selective renovation. Two facilities are in such deteriorated condition they are strong candidates for demolition: the Life Sciences Annex and the Student Services Building. Finally, one building can be re-purposed and if appropriate expanded when the new Utility Plant comes online: the Steam Power Plant.

The calculation for the 41 Departments yields a total need for 530,964 Assignable Square Feet (ASF) of space, an increase of 107,355 ASF , or 25% over the existing assigned square footage.

100 General Classroom Calculation

For the purpose of calculating space, LSH/PSAD has divided classroom space into five categories based on seating capacity and the optimal space characteristics to properly accommodate these capacities:

Seminar Rooms 24 seats or less
Small Classrooms 25-30 seats
Medium Classrooms 31-40 seats
Large Classrooms 41-60 seats
Lecture Halls over 60 seats

ASF/Students Station

This factor represents the average space one student station takes, calculated by dividing the total area of the room by the number of stations in the room. This factor accommodates an instructor’s station and any space required by AV Equipment. The proposed ASF per Student Station values are:

Seminar Rooms 30
Small Classrooms 28
Medium Classrooms 26
Large Classrooms 24
Lecture Halls 18

The average proposed ASF/Station factor for all general classroom space is 25.8, compared to the existing average of 23.0.

Room Utilization

Room utilization represents the average number of hours a room is scheduled for instruction during the week. A rate of 36 hours/week (90% of a standard 40 hour instructional week), is recommended for all rooms regardless of size. Given faculty or student resistance to schedule course instruction at certain times of the day or week, 36 hours/week is an industry standard for instructional space.
Station Occupancy. Station Occupancy represents the average percentage of stations occupied when rooms are in use. Typically it is easier to fill a small room section than a large one. Accordingly, Station Occupancy has been set as:

Seminar Rooms 80%
Small Classrooms 75%
Medium Classrooms 70%
Large Classrooms 65%
Lecture Halls 65%

These values are historically typical for 4-year universities.

Weekly Student contact Hours(WSCH)

WSCH is the total number of hours all students spend in scheduled instruction during a one-week period. Because it has been decided that the FTE student population will not increase over the master planning period, Eastern Illinois University has set an overall zero growth target for Weekly Student Contact Hours.