It took many years, and many meetings, and much creative wrangling, but just before Christmas the University finally took possession of 35 acres of riverfront along the northwest corner of campus, with every expectation of gaining another 43 acres in the new few years — art professor Father Mark Ghyselinck’s painting, above right, catches the view of the new lands from Corrado Hall.
Amid all the excited burble (green trails! environmental science labs! restoring salmon habitat! a boathouse! playing fields! hardworking regent Ralph Miller presented with a test tube of dirt from the property and a hilarious poem by University vice president Father Tom Doyle!) there was both exuberance and caution.
“The possibilities are immense,” said University president Father Bill Beauchamp, C.S.C. “We have a chance to energize our mission in wonderful ways. This land, used for heavy industry in the past, can become a living laboratory as we transform it into a jewel not only for the University but for the city, state, and region. We can heal and restore this land in ways that create terrific learning and growth possibilities for faculty and students. There are such extraordinary opportunities…”
“A watershed moment in the University’s long history,” said Allen Lund, chairman of the board of regents. “Far more than mere expansion of the campus. It’s an incredibly rare chance to see our Catholic mission in vigorous and creative action. It will transform the University forever, unite it with the holy waters that flow by it, open vast new opportunities for students to live and learn. We’ll go slowly, and plan meticulously, and we’ll need tremendous financial help from alumni and friends to make the dream real. But how often do you get a chance like this, to create a stunning new riverfront piece of campus? Perhaps once, if you are blessed…”
Are we gathering generous gifts toward the creation of a stunning new riverfront piece of campus? Yes indeed — contact vice president Jim Lyons, email@example.com, 503.943.7395.