UCF's plans to build on Arboretum roil campus
By Kevin Spear and Denise-Marie Balona, Orlando Sentinel
May 11, 2011
Like Central Park in Manhattan and Lake Eola in Orlando, the Arboretum at the University of Central Florida is a nearby escape from the heavy traffic and urban stress.Read the rest of the story at:
It's also where UCF wants to build "academic facilities," which has sparked furor among students, environmentalists and alumni who have circulated petitions, staged protests and — in the students' case — voted overwhelmingly to preserve an 8-acre piece of the forested sanctuary, revered for decades as a setting for outdoor classes, research and simple relaxation.
This story is just the latest example in the state of Florida that it takes more than spending money on education to call yourself "educated."
Having intentionally destroyed some of the most-loved property on campus, the school administrators had the gall to... oh, just read this...
In early 2008, water-district officials told UCF it had violated the Arboretum's conservation easement and would face financial penalties unless the damage was repaired. Last September, the district drafted a document specifying what had to be done to restore the Arboretum; known as a consent order, it also stipulated that the district would accept an earlier UCF offer to avoid a $23,000 fine by committing to $35,000 worth of wetlands restoration elsewhere on campus.I highlighted that phrase above for a specific reason.
But school officials rejected the consent order. Instead, they asked the water district to lift the conservation easement from the 8 acres and transfer it to 17 acres of woods and wetlands some distance from the campus core. They subsequently described the 8 acres as "ecologically degraded due to past actions and disturbances" and noted that the 17 acres offered as a replacement is healthy and benefits the Econlockhatchee River.
So, can you guess why or what pertinent facts are completely missing from this story, albeit, perhaps well-known to the well-informed in the Orlando area, of whom I am not one?
This is THE biggest current long-term story going on in Orlando, but the news media there and around the rest of the state seem not to know it, including the hapless Miami Herald and South Florida Sun-Sentinel -surprise!
Years from now, the Casey Anthony murder story, while thoroughly despicable, will have little long-term effect on the quality of life on Orlando-area residents or be a consideration why someone (or a business) actually moves to Orlando.
But this story will.
What's missing from this Orlando Sentinel story are the names of the individual attorneys and the law firm that worked for UCF during this development farce, where the school helped destroy something everyone enjoyed -on purpose... to make it safe for ugly buildings.
And please, don't pretend that the buildings erected there will be anything but unattractive, since with the exception of a few buildings here and there I could name from having seen them myself, the great majority of college campuses and college buildings in the State of Florida are FUGLY.
FUGLY with a capital "F."
And don't kid yourself about Coral Gables, either,
Frankly, though I have been a fan since I was a kid, having first attended their ballgames at the Orange Bowl in 1972 as an elementary school student, with U-M alums, the University of Miami campus isn't more than average in attractiveness -and has lots of dead space that ought to be much better utilized than it currently is!
But then having gone to a school like IU that's justifiably famous around the country for its campus beauty and those of its academic buildings, with Bloomington annually ranked as among the ten most-attractive in the entire country, it's easy for me to be very critical of Florida colleges.
But then having lived there and loved it, and knowing almost every inch of it from having given tours to prospective students -and occasionally, for well-known VIPS- it also means I know what people's expectations are and what they expect a college campus to look like.
Fugly academic buildings. much less, those erected on wilderness, are NOT among them.
indiana daily student
Groundskeepers, community work to keep campus beautiful
By Justin Allen
POSTED AT 12:00 AM ON Jun. 4, 2001
Every day thousands of students, faculty and visitors walk, run, bike and even stroll through the IU campus. Rich with tradition and aesthetic beauty, IU's campus has been critically acclaimed for decades.Read the rest of the story
In 1991 Thomas Gaines compiled a list of 100 campuses and evaluated them for urban space, the quality of architecture, landscaping and overall visual and physical appeal. IU was fifth on the list only after Stanford, Princeton, Wellsley and Colorado universities.
Campus beauty -just another reason why I and so many of my smart and ambitious friends at North Miami Beach High School fled the Sunshine State -as soon as we got a chance to. In my case, for the friendly and inviting rolling hills and cream & crimson of Bloomington. http://www.iub.edu/about/tour/