The Master Plan involves a sequence of carefully orchestrated steps that leads to the ultimate renovation of Main Building. It prioritizes the development of a Multidisciplinary Commons (see preliminary projects) in the short term, creates a hub for the social sciences in a renovated Blodgett Hall, and constructs a replacement for Walker Field House which includes the relocation of Athletics and Physical Education from Kenyon Hall. The sequence of projects not only addresses the greatest infrastructure needs on campus but deliberately enhances opportunities for learning that cross disciplinary boundaries and that occur both within and beyond the traditional classroom.
The establishment of a new Multidisciplinary Commons (see preliminary projects) in the Computer Center Building frees up swing space in Old Laundry Building (OLB) where the social science departments housed in Blodgett can be moved while Blodgett is renovated. As noted in its profile in the "Building Conditions Audit", Blodgett is one of the buildings most in need of renovation due to its lack of accessibility and its deteriorating envelope. Another major element of the plan includes replacing Walker Field House, rated as the building that is in the worst condition on campus. Rather than simply replacing Walker in kind, the College should incorporate the Athletics units currently located in Kenyon Hall into the new facility. Consolidating Athletics at the site of the Athletics and Fitness Center (constructed in 2000) frees up a significant amount of space in Kenyon Hall to be used as an Administrative Commons, an important precursor to the renovation of Main.
With the completion of the Multidisciplinary Commons, Blodgett Hall, and a new Field House, the College will need to complete one final project before addressing Main: the construction of a new student residential house. This will provide additional student beds that can accommodate students relocated from Main Building during its renovation and eventually provide space for students housed off campus or in the South Commons, a collection of temporary buildings which have outlived their expected utility. Once these four projects are complete, the College will be ready to take on the immense task of renovating Main Building and the College Center.
This scenario takes significant steps to prepare the College for Main's renovation in a way that minimizes disruptions and movement among various academic and administrative units. From a sustainability perspective, it also permits the goals and strategies identified in the Vassar Climate Action Plan to be undertaken and tested in smaller buildings like Blodgett Hall. In this way, the College can have its VCAP best practices established and formalized by the time Main is to be renovated. At any time during the execution of this plan, "stand-alone" projects (see link to unsequenced projects) can begin. For example, the relocation of Admissions, currently in Kautz House, can be undertaken at any stage within the scenario and/or as funding becomes available.