The quarter is rapidly coming to a close and the campus is taking on its traditional fall look. It is truly a beautiful time at Cal Poly Pomona. I want to use this edition of Communiqué to bring all of you up to date on some key university issues, including the 2002-03 priorities that I addressed at Fall Conference.
By now you have heard that we are in advanced negotiations with the American Red Cross to build the nation’s largest and most advanced blood processing facility in Innovation Village. Should we receive approval from the Board of Trustees, we will begin one of the most significant partnerships in CSU history. This new facility will be the cornerstone for Innovation Village, which will create a myriad of collaborative opportunities for our own academic programs and result in many benefits for the university. The historic agreement with the Red Cross is also an important first step as we identify other companies for this site. Congratulations to Dr. Ed Barnes, associate vice president for Executive Affairs, Steve Lauzier, real estate development manager for the Cal Poly Pomona Foundation, and many others for their hard work on this great project.
There are a couple of major university events in the early part of winter quarter. On January 1, 2003, the Cal Poly Universities will mark their 55th entry in the 114th Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade. This year’s float, A Sundae Afternoon, is sure to be a showstopper. In addition, a team of our Arabian horses will be in the parade, under the leadership of Bill Hughes, the director of our Arabian Horse Center. On Sunday night, February 9, we will be hosting our annual Founders’ Celebration event at the Pacific Palms Hotel and Resort in nearby Industry Hills. The 2003 event will feature legendary singer/songwriter Paul Anka along with mistress of ceremonies and television personality Stephanie Edwards in what should be a terrific evening. As you know, Founders’ Celebration is the only university-wide fundraising event to support student scholarships and academic enrichment. For more information, please visit: http://e-advancement.cpp.edu/founders/
For a number of years, we have been looking for solutions to the traffic bottleneck near the intersection of Temple and Valley. The rail traffic through that crossing has been slowing down commuters for decades and will become even worse with the completion of the Alameda Corridor project. Over the past year, we have been in negotiations with the Alameda Corridor East Construction Authority to divert the track over a part of our Spadra Farm (near Lanterman Developmental Center) and connect with a rail line that already passes under an overpass on Temple Avenue. This solution represents the least expensive and best way of eliminating the rail crossing on Temple and would ease congestion to Cal Poly Pomona and Mt. San Antonio College. We are also extremely sensitive to the fact that this diversion would encroach on and use part of our property. To date, our negotiations with this agency have been difficult and may have to be settled through condemnation proceedings. We are making every effort to create a win-win scenario that benefits everyone, but we will not be forced into relinquishing an important state and university asset for less than it is worth.
The passage of Proposition 47 earlier this month is a great victory for education in California and will pay long-term dividends to the CSU and Cal Poly Pomona. I especially want to thank Dr. Jon Hagler, our Director of Government Relations, and Dr. Ron Fremont, our AVP for University Relations, for their leadership in this successful effort. Our highest priority project, the $33 million expansion ofour University Library, is now scheduled to be funded. Over the next few months our capital planning team will be working closely with the Chancellor’s office to prepare for this important project, one that will benefit every student at Cal Poly Pomona for years to come.