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Home | Tag Archives: centennial plaza

Tag Archives: centennial plaza

Movies on the Lawn Return to Centennial Plaza

A new season of Movies on the Lawn is back, sponsored by UTEP’s Office of Student Life. The summer 2017 season will again take place at Centennial Plaza on selected Fridays. Admission is free, and free parking is available at the Sun Bowl Parking Garage.

Movies begin at sunset (about 8:30 p.m.). No alcohol, glass containers or pets allowed. Lawn chairs and blankets are welcome. Concessions are available for purchase.

Friday, June 2

“Selena”

Friday, June 16

“Moana”

Friday, July 7

“Sing”

Friday, July 21

“Beauty and the Beast”

For more information, contact the Office of Student Life at 915-747-5648 or visit them online.

Texas Group Honors UTEP’s Campus Transformation

The American Society of Landscape Architects Texas Chapter recognized The University of Texas at El Paso’s Campus Transformation Project with its Award of Excellence in Design during the group’s annual conference in Austin, Texas.

Christine Ten Eyck, the landscape architect who led the UTEP design team, accepted the award, which was the only one presented in that category this year.

Ten Eyck has called UTEP’s Campus Transformation Project (CTP) the highlight of her 20-plus-year professional career. She is proud of the end result, which created a new heart for the UTEP campus that embraces facets of the Chihuahuan Desert and promotes sustainability through the design, water conduits and selection of plant life.

“Any time you go through a difficult journey to build something with a large team of people and finally get to see it finished and growing and attracting people to spend time there – that is the best,” Ten Eyck said. “It makes it all worth it.”

The Texas judges strongly suggested that UTEP nominate its CTP to the ASLA national competition in the general design category. Those winners will be announced during the group’s annual meeting in October in Los Angeles, California.

The CTP has earned several state, national and international awards since it opened in April 2015. They include the 2016 U.S. Green Building SITES Silver Certification, which made it the first sustainable site certified project in the world.

The award for outstanding achievement in landscape architecture was presented during the organization’s Awards Luncheon on April 26, 2017.

UTEP’s Campus Transformation Earns Sustainability Honor

Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) recently announced that The University of Texas at El Paso’s Campus Transformation project earned the world’s first official SITES Silver Certification Award for achievement in sustainability.

Washington, D.C.-based GBCI based its rating on the results of a rigorous scoring system that included such categories as pre-design assessment, soil, water and vegetation designs, as well as maintenance and education. The project captured the maximum points for innovation.

“This is great for UTEP,” said Greg McNicol, associate vice president for business affairs – facilities management. He helped plan and coordinate the “once in a lifetime project.” McNicol said that the University was able to reclaim unusable slopes and parking lots and turn them into a campus jewel.

The most significant piece of the Campus Transformation effort is the impressive Centennial Plaza that officially opened in April 2015.

The 11-acre oasis in the center of campus is made up of a large grass oval surrounded by wide multi-textured walking paths, shade trees, drought-resistant shrubs, concrete benches, water fountains, rock-strewn arroyos and a 130-seat amphitheater.

SITES is a comprehensive rating system designed to distinguish sustainable landscapes, measure their performance and elevate their value, said Heather Venhaus, principal of Regenerative Environmental Design. Venhaus, who helped shepherd the project through its GBCI certification, said the SITES framework is based on the concept of ecosystem services where nature supports daily life.

“Sustainable landscapes create resilient communities that clean air and water, provide habitat, reduce consumption and promote human health and well-being by connecting people to nature,” she said.

Micah Silvey, director of the GBCI certification team, applauded those involved for achieving the first Silver Certification Award outside the pilot program using the latest criteria.

“Their achievement is commendable,” he said.

Before:

CentennialPlazaBefore

After:

Grand opening of UTEP's Centennial Plaza, Saturday, April 18, 2015, in El Paso, Texas. Photo by Ivan Pierre Aguirre/UTEP News Service
Grand opening of UTEP’s Centennial Plaza, Saturday, April 18, 2015, in El Paso, Texas. Photo by Ivan Pierre Aguirre/UTEP News Service

International Group Honors UTEP’s Campus Transformation

The Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) recently announced that The University of Texas at El Paso’s Campus Transformation/Centennial Plaza project earned its top award for Excellence in Landscape Architecture.

The organization will present its most prestigious award to UTEP officials on July 12, 2016, during the group’s annual international conference in Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

Greg McNicol, UTEP associate vice president for business affairs – facilities management, said the University was honored to have been recognized for this successful, once-in-a-lifetime project that has had a positive impact on UTEP students and employees.

The most significant piece of the Campus Transformation effort is the spectacular Centennial Plaza that officially opened April 18, 2015.

centennial-plaza

The 11-acre oasis in the center of campus is composed of a large grass oval surrounded by wide multi-textured walking paths, shade trees, drought-resistant shrubs, concrete benches, water fountains, rock-strewn arroyos and a 130-seat amphitheater.

“We reclaimed this space from parking lots and unusable slopes and returned it to the campus and the community,” McNicol said as he fingered through a 10-page nomination form sent to SCUP with maps, renderings, descriptions and before-and-after plaza photos. “Now it’s part of who we are – a campus in the Southwest.”

SCUP organized in 1965 and is made up of higher education leaders from around the world. The group seeks to integrate planning to benefit the physical campus and the professionals who work there. Its first Excellence Awards were presented in 2000 and interest in them has grown steadily.

campus2Judges for this year’s juried competition considered such aspects as storm water design, sustainable design, and design for transportation or infrastructure.

Their comments included “great transformation space for pedestrians,” “before-and-after descriptions were very compelling,” “Site plan says it all. Acres of asphalt paving and parking in the before photo,” and “Really like this one, I think it’s a winner.”

This is the second honor for the Campus Transformation project. The Texas Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture presented UTEP with its 2015 Texas Gold Leaf Award during the annual Texas Tree Conference luncheon Oct. 1, 2015, in Waco, Texas.

More than 700 trees of 24 varieties were planted on campus for the project.

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