A Campus That Works
As the University changes to meet the evolving needs of our students, we must make sure that our physical space also meets those needs.
In early 2013 Simmons initiated an institutional and master planning process to study how our aging physical plant can meet the needs of its academic future as Simmons enters its second century. Through this Strategy 2022 initiative, which included input from academic deans, faculty, staff, and students and is guided by the President and Board of Trustees, Simmons developed a set of priorities and recommendations for future campus development and began exploring options. The Strategy 2022 process crystalized two vital needs of the university moving forward:
- Addressing our aging science facilities at a time when Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) education has taken on a regional and national importance; and
- Uniting residential accommodations and athletics facilities, currently on the Residential Campus, with existing academic and administrative facilities on the Academic Campus as a “One Simmons” concept.
Filed in May 2019, our Institutional Master Plan Notification Form/Project Notification Form (IMPNF/PNF) presents a 10-year plan for our Residence and Academic campuses, detailing the renovation of the existing Lefavour Hall to accommodate our science program and laying out the One Simmons vision for one, unified campus.
Thanks to careful, prudent fiscal management, we are approaching these important projects from a position of financial strength. Check back for updates as our planning progresses. For additional information, contact Jeremy Solomon, Associate Vice President for Communications & Public Affairs, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (617) 521-2324.
What is the vision for the Simmons campus?
There are two goals that are driving the capital upgrades currently under consideration: to modernize our science facilities and to improve the living and learning environment for future Simmons students.
The goals will be addressed in two phases. The first phase is a renovation of an existing building, Lefavour, to provide for modernized science facilities. The planning for this project is underway, with construction scheduled to start in September 2020.
The second phase is not as far along and will only be pursued if fiscal and logistical criteria are met. The vision is to relocate residential and athletics facilities from our residential campus along Brookline Avenue to the main academic campus at 300 The Fenway, creating a unified living, learning, and wellness environment. These plans are consistent with our recent evolution to University status, the reorganization of academic programs under four distinct colleges, and with our founding mission.
How does this project connect to Simmons’ overall goals?
Our academic leadership has invested significant resources in developing a strategic plan that we believe meets the needs of the next century of students. From this position of strength, we are excited to modernize our campus to support our academic programs and to improve our student experience.
Assuming the permitting process goes according to plan, what is the construction timeline?
We filed our Institutional Master Plan Notification Form/Project Notification Form (IMPNF/PNF) with the City of Boston in May 2019, which outlines the phase one science project and the aspirational phase two living and learning center (LLC). If all goes according to plan, construction on the science project will begin in September 2020, with an opening in September 2021.
The timeline for phase two is still being established, but it is several years away.
How many students will the LLC accommodate? More or less than our current enrollment?
After careful analysis, we’ve determined that we do not want to significantly increase the size of our undergraduate population. Larger class sizes would impact current student-faculty ratios, and might threaten the level of student support services we currently offer. So, while the LLC might offer a few dozen more beds than the number we currently have on campus, this project is not intended to accommodate future growth in enrolled students.
What does this mean for the residential campus?
Simmons will not be selling our residential campus. We are exploring the possibility of entering into a long-term, 99-year ground lease with a developer, who would then redevelop the campus. The proceeds of this transaction would enable Simmons to fund the construction of the LLC on the main campus and fulfill our vision for a one campus. At the expiration of the lease, the land would revert back to Simmons.
Where can I find more information about these projects?
We will continue to post information on this landing page as these exciting campus development projects progress.
The Simmons University Institutional Master Plan was approved by the Boston Redevelopment Authority in 2000.
View the plan and amendments:
- Institutional Master Plan Notification Form/Project Notification Form 2019
- Institutional Master Plan 2017 Renewal
- Institutional Master Plan 2015 Renewal
- Institutional Master Plan 2012 Renewal
- Institutional Master Plan 2010 Renewal
- Institutional Master Plan 2000 3rd Amendment
- Institutional Master Plan 2000 2nd Amendment
- Institutional Master Plan 2000 1st Amendment
- Institutional Master Plan 2000
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