USM|Portland

Portlander

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I prefer the changes, the previous design reminded me of a textile mill complex.
 

TC_zoid

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I prefer the changes, the previous design reminded me of a textile mill complex.
Agreed. The school and city has a big opportunity to build something substantial, now that Portland is on the national map. No point in making it look like a re-purposed mill building. Who gets excited walking into that? I'll bet many that live in the area (the older ones) are upset at this expansion. I never will forget an old guy's vitriol regarding the idea of closing Bedford Street for only one-way traffic. He went on and on about how he would have to drive around the block to get home. Some people just don't care about anyone or anything but themselves, even though this would create less of a seam for both sides of the campus. You know, "togetherness."
 

Lrfox

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Outside amenities side, do you feel that the actual USM education is worth the premium you're paying over your state school?
I know this is old, but as a USM grad myself, I have to reiterate what citylover94 said - I actually paid significantly less for my USM education than I would have for a state school in MA. This is true for all of the other students I spoke with from out of state. The UMaine system has billboards on I-93 in Boston that say "Go to college in Maine for less than the cost of UMass." I think it's a major selling point for the schools and it's the primary reason I picked Maine for college (I started in Farmington to be close to skiing, realized skiing is pricey for a student, so I finished at USM to be closer to Boston). I don't know that my college "experience" was as good as other people I know (USM has a high ratio of commuters, so campus life isn't great), but the lack of debt and the relatively decent education made it absolutely worth it.

On topic, the rendering looks great!
 

TC_zoid

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According to the illustration in today's PPH, it looks like Anchor site 1 will be the new building for the law school and graduate business center. It looks a bit crowded though. Perhaps it should be set back and taller, perhaps 10 stories to offset the loss of the footprint. Ideally though, the law school should be Anchor site 2. And the 100,000 GSF building, what will that be? It looks like they will demo the truly hideous current law school building, now made infamous from being labeled one of the ugliest academic buildings in the U.S. I wouldn't argue with that.
 
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Cosakita18

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From the recent PPH article about the massive Alfond investment in the USM campus.

Looks like a 5-story graduate center along Bedford St between the library and Wishcamper center. I agree that it looks a bit small from this angle.

This project and the student housing across the street should create a nice urban campus feel along Bedford. Like Portland's answer to Commonwealth Ave. :p

Although I am a bit disappointed USM didn't pursue the Congress St. graduate center / law school concept drawn up by Archetype.

Rendering3-1024x652.jpg
 
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TC_zoid

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USM needs to start thinking like a business, the way MOST colleges and universities do around the country. Sports is an excellent idea to increase revenue. Cross Insurance Arena sits like a giant turkey, with a level below minor league hockey for sports. USM could use money to establish much bigger basketball and hockey programs to play in CIA. Also, both men's and women's soccer can be more dynamic by renovating and increasing capacity of Fitzpatrick Stadium. An enclosed, heated skybridge over 295 could be built connecting the stadium with the school. And, a different or more enhanced mascot with more creative clothing and merchandising options is a proven revenue generator for schools. At present, nothing stands out. Take a lesson from the Seadogs. They know how to max out that idea.
 

Seanflynn78

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I am interested where the future soccer stadium is going. Also Hadlock field needs to be renovated soon. People in the northeast lose their minds over big time college athletics, but you are so right. Look no further than UConn. If you went back 30 years Storrs, CT/UConn campus looked completely different- in a bad way. Now it rivals UMass but Storrs is still decades behind Amherst.
 

TC_zoid

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I am interested where the future soccer stadium is going. Also Hadlock field needs to be renovated soon. People in the northeast lose their minds over big time college athletics, but you are so right. Look no further than UConn. If you went back 30 years Storrs, CT/UConn campus looked completely different- in a bad way. Now it rivals UMass but Storrs is still decades behind Amherst.
Yes, the soccer stadium is important for Portland. Maybe Fitzpatrick becomes the soccer stadium? (Dump those bleachers for a real stadium foundation.) Football is losing popularity, and soccer is gaining. Soccer includes female teams too. It seems the better idea. I would like to see a 25,000 seat facility that is covered for year-round use--soccer and track. And, this is a big one, one side of the seating section that can be moved in, so that basketball can be played (again, year round). Some schools do this to focus more on basketball during Jan-Feb. Not all 25,000 would be for basketball, but more like half. Think ahead. There is no reason why Portland should not have a 10,000 student university. Orono is nearly 10,000 and that's way up north. Portland is close to Boston, which is becoming a crucial tech center for the world. Students want to be close to Boston for grad schools. Portland has ridiculous growth potential.
 
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Portlander

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^ Total renovation of Fitzpatrick Stadium makes perfect sense for soccer due to it's layout and location though I don't envision an enclosed need for basketball with the 3200 seat Expo next door. Your idea of the Cross Insurance Arena being utilized by USM for potential hockey and basketball programs is excellent and I hope it comes to fruition.
 

Cosakita18

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Related to the massive Alfond grant: UNE will be relocating its medical campus from Biddeford to Portland, and constructing a new College of Osteopathic Medicine at their Stevens Ave campus.


Construction is tentatively set for 2022.

Between The Rioux Institute, a new graduate center and Engineering school at USM, and a new medical college at UNE, Portland is becoming quite the Academic hub!

1602615106552.png
 
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Cosakita18

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Do we have a UNE thread?
I think this thread should be renamed "Universities" and combine UNE / USM. I doubt UNE will ever have enough consistent campus development to deserve its own thread.
 

GIL

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I think this thread should be renamed "Universities" and combine UNE / USM. I doubt UNE will ever have enough consistent campus development to deserve its own thread.
I like this suggestion, and would add that the main thread is also needing an adjustment: Shouldn’t it read “Greater Portland / Maine” rather than “Portland / Greater Maine”?
 

Portlander

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I agree and would just go with Greater Portland, everyone checking out the site will realize it's Maine. A thread for Lewiston/Auburn and Bangor could be started by members from those areas if they want to participate and update us on developments in their cities.
 

markhb

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I like that the forum title implies that Maine > Massachusetts ;) .
 

Portlander

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From last night's planning board packet: An updated rendering of the Residence Hall / Campus center with the new façade.


View attachment 8266
Much better. No longer looks like a textile complex and every new building in Portland does not need to have a red brick facade. Just read in the PPH that the student center and dormitory has received Planning Board approval with a 7-0 vote.
 
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TC_zoid

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Went to USM for one year, years ago. I loved the location, but missed the idea of living on campus. This will be a big help. And, ideally, a wide enclosed foot bridge leading down to Fitzpatrick Stadium for a renovated and complete athletic center. Add improved programs for USM hockey and basketball at Cross Insurance Arena, and now it's a true destination university (with the easy 2 hour train ride to Boston).
 

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