By Zachary Wright
Departments in the Gage Building moving back to the Auditorium Building this upcoming school year as Roosevelt University expected to sell the floors from the Gage Building.
Each department is expected to move at various times throughout the school year with the move hoping to be completed before the spring 2018 semester.
“There’s definitely an interest on capitalizing on the value of the building,” said Assoc. Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Mike Ensdorf. “We’re relocating over to the Auditorium building and parts of the Wabash Building to maximize the use of our footprint, of our space. There’s a fair amount of open spaces that we can use for classrooms, offices, and department uses,” Ensdorf said.
A real estate firm has been contacted to assess properties belonging Roosevelt University.
“This is to ensure maximum utilization and identify new revenue generating opportunities,” said Nicole Barron, Assoc. Vice President of Marketing at Roosevelt.
Departments within the building spoke out about the move.
“This is a way to raise money that would not raise tuition,” said Elizabeth Meadows, Assoc. Professor of Elementary Education and Reading. “I think there is a lot of gain.”
“The floors in the building are going to be sold and the timeline is based on interest,” Ensdorf explained.
As of right now, there has been no buyer confirmed for the floors Roosevelt owns in the Gage Building. However, “The university has some consultants who are working with potential buyers,” says Linda Jones, assoc. professor of journalism. The move back to the auditorium building has been planned for months with rumors becoming official in January.
Students who are used to attending class in the Gage Building will now attend class in Wabash or in the Auditorium. To ensure departments won’t have to downsize, proper and adequate must be allocated for each department. Jones confirms each department will have roughly equivalent space, including proper space for media labs.
“For a lot of people, this has been home for their entire career here at Roosevelt,” says Jones. The Gage Building has been a part of Roosevelt University for nearly 17 years when it was purchased in December of 2000.
“At first glance, it feels more connected in some ways,” says Ensdorf. “It’s inevitable that it’s going to be more vibrant, more exciting, and busier,” Ensdorf continues.
President Malekzadeh, Provost Becker and other members of the executive board have not yet officially commented.