The University of New Mexico has announced plans to demolish several vacant buildings on its main campus as part of a strategic initiative to enhance campus facilities and support long-term growth. The buildings scheduled for demolition include the Aerospace Studies Building (Building 159), Army ROTC (Building 175), and the Army ROTC Annex (Building 175A). The demolition is expected to take place in the coming months.
The decision to demolish these buildings was influenced by a comprehensive building assessment report conducted in 2018, which estimated the cost of repairing, restoring, and addressing significant facility failures to exceed the value of the buildings. Additionally, as part of a negotiation with the New Mexico Higher Education Department (NMHED), UNM committed to removing these facilities from its inventory once renovations to the new ROTC complex were complete. The recent relocation of the ROTC programs into the newly constructed ROTC Education Complex, a $10.8 million renovation project completed in March 2023, rendered these former buildings unnecessary for their intended purpose.
The new ROTC Education Complex is a state-of-the-art facility that features classrooms, offices, and shared amenities designed to foster collaboration and teamwork among the Army, Navy, and Air Force ROTC programs on campus. It serves as a hub for the development of future military leaders.
Demolition activities for the former Army ROTC and Army ROTC Annex buildings will begin June 23, with Franken Construction overseeing the process. Subsequently, the Aerospace Studies Building will also be demolished. This decision aligns with UNM's strategic vision, UNM 2040: Opportunity Defined, which sets forth a plan for the university's future.
During the demolition process, temporary disruptions to traffic flow and accessibility around the construction site are anticipated, given the central locations of these buildings on campus. However, UNM is committed to minimizing inconvenience to the UNM community. Any expected impacts on traffic or access will be proactively communicated to the campus community to ensure that everyone is well-informed and prepared.
Once the demolition is complete, the sites of Buildings 159, 175, and 175A will be leveled and returned to the UNM portfolios of properties managed by the UNM Real Estate Department. The department is responsible for overseeing all real estate holdings, interests, and transactions at UNM, with the goal of maximizing the benefits and potential growth of the university's properties. The future uses of the sites will be determined in part by the outcomes of the Integrated Campus Plan, currently in progress.
For more information about UNM's ongoing projects and initiatives, please visit the UNM Planning, Design & Construction website at pdc.unm.edu.