Campus buildings in the news

News outlet logo for favicons/freep.com.png

Wayne State, Karmanos to build cancer research, medical towers in Detroit’s Midtown

The Wayne State University School of Medicine and the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute announced plans Monday to build a pair of towers in Midtown Detroit for medical education and research. The project, estimated to cost between $350 million to $450 million, would replace aging Wayne State medical school facilities and be an expansion of research space for the cancer institute. A joint committee is working to determine a precise location for the two adjacent and connected towers. The decision could come in the next three to four months, said Dr. Mark Schweitzer, vice president of health affairs for Wayne State. “The goal is to provide state-of-the-art medical education facilities and state-of-the-art research facilities,” Schweitzer said.  
News outlet logo for favicons/yahoo.com.png

Wayne State basketball to host Michigan in exhibition to open new arena

Wayne State will open its new basketball arena with a flourish. The Warriors will host Michigan in an exhibition in the inaugural game at the new arena on Nov. 5 at 7 p.m. It’s a collaboration between Wayne State athletic director Rob Fournier and Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel for a high-level opponent in the debut of the new arena for the Warriors, who play in Division II. "I truly appreciate the willingness of Coach (Juwan) Howard and Warde to provide this opportunity to open our arena with the state's premier Division 1 program," Fournier said in a statement.  "To me, it underscores their genuine support for the City of Detroit and our community.” Wayne State also has a partnership with the Pistons on the new arena, which also will house the Pistons’ G League franchise, the Motor City Cruise. The Cruise will begin their first season in the G League in the fall as well. In the past, Wayne State has played against Michigan in games at Crisler Center. This time, the Wolverines are returning the favor. "I want to personally thank Coach Howard and his staff for helping us open our new basketball arena," Wayne State coach David Greer said. "It certainly has been a long time coming (with the new arena) and the partnership with the Detroit Pistons made it happen. To have a Division I program in Michigan be a part of our celebration of opening our new arena will make it a big event for our young men since Michigan is a big part of Detroit basketball.”
News outlet logo for favicons/detroitnews.com.png

Michigan Marvels: Wayne State's Old Main Building

It's now the centerpiece of Wayne State University's Detroit campus, but the Old Main building started out life as a high school. Construction on Detroit's Central High School began in 1894 at the corner of Cass and Warren, and held its first classes in the fall of 1896. It was originally T-shaped, with more than 100 rooms and about 1,600 students. Decorative brickwork, elevators, 20-foot-wide corridors and a clock tower were some of the features of the four-story building. Today, Old Main houses the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, which includes the university's planetarium and the anthropology museum. While it is no longer the only building on campus, its age, history and prominent location at the intersection of Cass and Warren make it an emblem of the university.
News outlet logo for favicons/mitechnews.com.png

Wayne State University completes STEM Innovation Learning Center

Wayne State University has completed construction on the STEM Innovation Learning Center, and commemorated the occasion with an interactive virtual celebration complete with live remarks, a 3D tour, drone flyover and more. The facility, made possible by a $14.75 million commitment from the state of Michigan and bond proceeds to WSU, will serve as a campus hub for interdisciplinary teaching, learning and innovation. The building features 100,000 square feet of flexible classrooms, instructional labs, a maker space, and 3D printing lab with state-of-the-art technology to support hands-on and project-based learning. “The STEM Innovation Learning Center will provide countless educational and research opportunities for students and faculty from across campus,” said Wayne State University President M. Wilson. “In supporting this project, the state of Michigan has also invested in talent and workforce development, and this facility will benefit Wayne State — and the city of Detroit — for generations to come.” In keeping with the university’s current health and safety guidelines, the STEM Innovation Learning Center opened with limited access and will initially be used for space necessary for essential student support services. In the future, it will play a crucial role in achieving Wayne State’s vision for STEM education and research, as well as supporting K-12 students from the greater Detroit area with experiences and exposure to hands-on, creative learning to ignite their interest in science and technology. “Detroit is and always has been a center for innovation in Michigan, and this new facility will provide a crucial resource to Wayne State students and Detroit-area K-12 students who are interested in pursuing a career in STEM,” said Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. “This is exactly what we need to attract more talent and investment to our state and build a strong workforce. I applaud Wayne State University for their dedication to Detroit-area students, and look forward to working with them moving forward.”
News outlet logo for favicons/dbusiness.com.png

Wayne State opening of STEM Innovation Learning Center Oct. 1

Wayne State University will open its new STEM Innovation Learning Center on Thursday, Oct. 1, and host virtual pop-up mini events throughout the day from 9:15 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Students, faculty, staff, and the community are invited to join the celebration. The virtual event will include remarks from university and state leadership, a tour of the building, a drone flyover, and more. Construction on the project, which was made possible by a $14.75 million commitment from the state of Michigan as well as bond proceeds to WSU, began in March 2019. “Now more than ever is a time for innovation and optimism, and this facility will help further a culture of collaboration and creativity across disciplines,” says Tonya Matthews, associate provost for inclusive workforce development and director of the STEM Innovation Learning Center. “Students, faculty and the city of Detroit will benefit from the ideas and opportunities generated within this cutting-edge, state-of-the-art learning space for years to come.” This fall, the building will soft open with limited access while equipment is moved in and final systems are tested. The STEM Innovation Learning Center, however, has already begun to play a role in achieving Wayne State’s vision for STEM education and research for current and future Warriors through various community partnerships that could build upon the spirit of inclusive, collaborative STEM.
News outlet logo for favicons/mlive.com.png

Can a building truly be COVID-proof? A look at the latest virus-busting technology

Some of the new COVID-19-blocking technology is techy and futuristic – like ultraviolet light wands that look like lightsabers. Some pieces are unflashy, like HVAC filters and ventilation tweaks. There’s no way to fully COVID-proof a building – at least not as long as humans are allowed inside. But there are pieces of technology, old and new, that are likely to chop down on the risk. A new trend is the fogger, which disperses disinfectant across a given area. They can stand on their own or be sprayed manually and be worn like a backpack, said Rob Davenport, associate vice president of facilities, planning and management at Wayne State University. Wayne State bought eight electrostatic fogging devices in preparation for the school year. They’ll be used twice per day in any of the weight rooms and fitness centers on campus that might be allowed to open for students or athletes. It will also be used in any potential exposure areas if the school has a positive COVID-19 case, Davenport said. Another suggested method is circulating air in buildings. “The worst thing you can do is not move air,” said Davenport. “We have a better chance at controlling the pandemic in a building when we are moving air.” With the tap of a touchscreen, building managers can adjust how much fresh air is coming inside. It's a concept many large commercial buildings like universities and hospitals already utilize, Davenport said. Hospital operating rooms, for example, often require as many as 20 full air exchanges per hour and have close to 100% outdoor air, Davenport said. At Wayne State, they’re upping the percentage this fall from 10-15% new air to at least 20%. As MLive interviewed experts about emerging technology to kill COVID-19 particles, there was a common, unprompted theme. “Wear a mask. That's the best thing you can do," said Davenport.
News outlet logo for favicons/wxyz.com.png

Pistons purchase G-League team in Arizona, will play games at Wayne State in 2021-22

The Pistons are getting a new G League affiliate for the 2021-22 season. The team and the Gatorade league jointly announced Wednesday that the Pistons purchased the Phoenix Suns’ affiliate, the Northern Arizona Suns. That new team will be renamed and begin play in the new arena being built on the campus of Wayne State University after next season. The Grand Rapids Drive, who had been the Pistons’ affiliate in the G-League, will play its last season before the transition to the new team and new arena. The Drive have a separate ownership group — that includes former Pistons icon Ben Wallace — and the move gives Pistons team owner Tom Gores control over the new Detroit-based franchise. Wayne State and the Pistons last year announced the construction of a $25 million arena that will house the new G League franchise as well as Wayne State’s men’s and women’s basketball teams. The new facility will be 70,000 square feet and will be located near the corner of Warren and Trumbull on the school’s athletic campus. In addition to playing games on the school’s campus, a move that will generate revenue and usage of the new facility, the organization will work with Wayne State administrators to create programs and internship opportunities for students in fields like sports marketing, community relations, physical therapy, rehabilitation and sports and entertainment business operations.
News outlet logo for favicons/mlive.com.png

When and how will it end? Considering the end-game for Michigan’s coronavirus crisis

They’re the questions on everybody’s mind about Michigan’s coronavirus crisis. When will it end? How will it end? When will things get back to normal? Extreme social distancing is the only way to bring coronavirus numbers down to the point where the economy can re-open; it’s the only tool available, absent a vaccine, said Dr. Paul Kilgore, Wayne State University physician and epidemiologist. “I look at sheltering in place almost as a vaccine,” he said. “It’s our vaccine intervention for now. “The more we do it, the more it will continue to be effective,” he said. “We really need to get to that flattening curve ASAP. It’s absolutely the No. 1 priority.”
News outlet logo for favicons/clickondetroit.com.png

Wayne State University opens up dorm for Detroit health care workers during COVID-19 pandemic

Wayne State University is offering a campus dorm to Detroit health care workers during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Workers with the Henry Ford Health System and Detroit Medical Center have the opportunity to stay at Atchison Hall so they don’t need to return home as they battle COVID-19 on the frontlines. The building has private accommodations for more than 200 people. People staying in the hall will receive a hospitality snack bag and linens. They also have access to Wi-Fi, community kitchens and in-building laundry.
News outlet logo for favicons/crainsdetroit.com.png

Wayne State celebrates completion of $151 million student apartment complex

The Anthony Wayne Drive Apartments, a $151 million apartment complex at Wayne State University, has been completed. The 406,800 square-foot 840-bed student housing and retail project is Wayne State's largest student housing structure cost-wise, Tim Michael, associate vice president of student auxiliary services and chief housing officer, said in a statement emailed to Crain's. The first phase of the project — an 11-story center tower with 400 beds — was completed in August 2018. The last phase added two wings of six and eight stories on either side of the central tower. Those towers added apartments for 440 residents as well as a 9,000-square-foot Campus Health Center on the ground floor of the north tower and more retail space, the school's website says. Students moved into the two newest buildings at the start of the fall semester. Wayne State and local officials held a ribbon-cutting celebration Wednesday to mark the end of construction. "We are beyond thrilled that our partnership with Corvias has enabled us to provide quality facilities and resources for our students, while also allowing us to advance financially," Wayne State University President M. Roy Wilson said in the release. "Wayne State has always aimed to create a positive economic impact on the greater Detroit community. With Corvias' investment, we continue to increase job growth and support local and small businesses."
News outlet logo for favicons/yahoo.com.png

Corvias completes state-of-the-art student housing complex, part of $307.5 million partnership with Wayne State University

A celebratory ribbon cutting was held Oct. 9 to mark the completion of Wayne State's Anthony Wayne Drive Apartments. The apartments will also feature more than 17,000 square feet of new retail space, along with the recently opened Campus Health Center. Through this $307.5 million partnership, 841 new beds have been successfully delivered, the Helen L. DeRoy Apartments were demolished to make way for a green space and an additional 370 renovated beds are coming in the Chatsworth Residence Hall. “We are beyond thrilled that our partnership with Corvias has enabled us to provide quality facilities and resources for our students, while also allowing us to advance financially," said Wayne State University President M. Roy Wilson. "Wayne State has always aimed to create a positive economic impact on the greater Detroit community. With Corvias' investment, we continue to increase job growth and support local and small businesses."
News outlet logo for favicons/curbed.com.png

Wayne State’s urban innovation district near New Center takes shape

Ever since a working group convened to discuss the matter in 2014, Wayne State University has been working to create an “Innovation District” near New Center. Those plans finally seem to be coming together. Last year, the university purchased the NextEnergy Center, now called the Industry Innovation Center (I2C), on Burroughs Street across from TechTown Detroit. Those three partners have teamed up to create Detroit Urban Solutions, which is taking a multidisciplinary approach to address issues facing cities. One block away, Wayne State opened the Integrative Biosciences Center (IBio) in 2015, which similarly takes a multidisciplinary approach to health research. TechTown was founded by Wayne State in 2000, and though it has since become an independent nonprofit, still works in close partnership with the university’s Office of Economic Development. Wayne State has also begun to release details of its master plan, and Emily Thompson, place-based initiatives manager at WSU’s Office of Economic Development, says this redesign aligns with the aims of that plan. “One goal of the master plan was to create better north-south connectivity across campus,” she says. “With more activity, it’s more likely to draw the university up that way. So whatever we do with I2C on will improve walkability as a whole.”
News outlet logo for favicons/candgnews.com.png

New arena approved for WSU basketball and Pistons’ G League affiliate

In May of this year, Wayne State’s board of governors approved plans for the construction of an arena that will host Wayne State men’s and women’s basketball games, as well as contests for the Pistons’ G League affiliate. Rob Fournier, Wayne State director of athletics, expects the arena — which he said will have a seating capacity of about 3,000 — to be completed in July of 2021 on the campus of Wayne State, near the intersection of Warren and Trumbull avenues in Detroit. “Anytime your athletic program can be associated directly with a professional team, there’s no downside to it,” Fournier said. “Can you imagine showing a recruit around the facility and say, ‘Oh, by the way, we have a partnership with the Detroit Pistons of the NBA.’ How does that hurt your recruiting? Those are the kind of intangibles that separate you from other institutions.” The projected cost for the arena is $25 million. “The basic formula is we’re putting the money upfront, and then they’re paying us back money over a number of years to cover that cost,” Fournier said of the lease agreement with the Pistons.
News outlet logo for favicons/curbed.com.png

First look at Wayne State’s master plan

Midtown and Detroit are changing fast. Wayne State University is trying to keep up. In August 2018, to help better position itself for these changes, the university began the creation of a new master plan that will shape the future look and function of its campus. It hired the planning firm DumontJanks, which has extensive experience working with universities, to be the lead consultant on the project. The firm and university officials have given a series of public presentations over the last few months. The general shape of the plan is becoming clear, but there’s still many more details yet to be released. The plan itself is not prescriptive—there’s no timeline and the recommendations are largely form-based that can be implemented as resources become available. “This is a framework that will allow us to have flexibility and includes a lot of data so we can understand impacts,” said Ashley Flintoff, director of planning and space management for Wayne State. “We’ll soon have a tool to make better, informed decisions.” Several developments on the campus are already underway and were decided on prior to this planning effort, such as the massive Gateway Performance Complex, relocation of the Mackenzie House, and a new basketball arena built in partnership with the Detroit Pistons. However these plans roll out over the next months and years, it’s clear Wayne State will be in a much better position to grow and adapt alongside the city.