UI considers building a $1.3 million President’s home

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by TAYLOR VIYDO & KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on October 21, 2013 at 7:03 PM

Updated Monday, Oct 21 at 7:21 PM

MOSCOW, Idaho.--The University of Idaho wants to build a new home for its future President. It would cost more than $1.3 million.

School officials said the current UI President’s home on campus is in desperate need of an update.

"It needs a new HVAC system. It doesn't have air conditioning. Everything's outdated,” said Ron Smith, Finance and Administration Vice President.

Those are just some of the improvements school officials said are needed at the president’s home. The home was originally built in the late 1960s and has since outgrown its use.

"Why we need a new president's residence is just to make it more functional. It's more cost effective than renovating the old,” said Smith.

The plan is to demolish the current house and built the new one on top. Half of the $1.3 million cost would be paid by donors. The rest would be paid by the school.

KREM 2 News asked if building a new home for the president is worth that much money.

“Well, I think it's necessary to have a president on campus. This is a residential campus. The president needs to be part of the culture, needs to be a part of the campus,” said Smith.

Part of the new home would also serve as public space for some events. UI leaders are searching for a new President.

"We think the old residence is actually a deterrent. This may be something that would help attract a new president,” said Smith.

The school hopes to begin construction this spring if the plan is approved.

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