UNC Asheville Taking Steps to Sell Chancellor's Residence,
Planning Begins for New Facility to be Built with Private Funds,
The UNC Asheville Board of Trustees at a meeting July
20 took preliminary steps required to sell the Chancellor’s Residence at
62 Macon Avenue in anticipation of building a new multi-purpose facility
more suited to current needs of the campus.
“A chancellor’s residence today functions far
differently than those in past decades. In addition to being a family
residence, it is an important part of the day-to-day business of the
campus community. It serves as a location for meetings, receptions,
programs and performances, large dinners and accommodations for
distinguished University guests. The Macon Avenue home, while
well-suited for family living, is inadequate for official university
functions and lacks sufficient parking. The Board of Trustees has been
seriously exploring options for a new facility for the past eight years
and, with the strong local real estate market, it’s time to move ahead,”
said Sue H. McClinton, UNC Asheville Board of Trustees chair.
Placing the house on the market is contingent upon
passage of state legislation allowing sale proceeds to be applied to
construction of the new facility. A special provision providing
legislative permission for use of sale proceeds has been included in
budgets of both the House and Senate. Similar special provisions have
passed for a number of campuses in the University of North Carolina
The 4,400-square-foot Macon Avenue home, located
near campus in the Grove Park neighborhood, was built in 1924. It was
purchased in 1966 by the state as the president’s residence for
Asheville-Biltmore College, UNC Asheville’s predecessor institution,
shortly after the college moved to its present-day location.
Preliminary planning for the new multi-purpose
facility anticipates an approximately 7,500-square-foot building, with
4,500 square feet of public space and 3,000 square feet of residential
space. Appalachian State University used a similar approach in balancing
public and private space for Appalachian House, built in 2002.
Net proceeds from sale of the Macon Avenue property
are expected to pay for a significant part of the residential portion of
the new building. An additional $1.5 million in private support is being
raised for the public portion of the building, grounds and the
building’s infrastructure. Some $400,000 in private funds have already
been pledged specifically for this project, said William P. Massey, UNC
Asheville Vice Chancellor for Alumni and Development.
The UNC Asheville Board of Trustees’ Property
Committee is looking at several possible locations for the new facility.
First choice for the location is on or near the UNC Asheville campus,
McClinton said. Planning and construction of the new facility is
expected to take about two years.
The Board of Trustees has arranged for an apartment
at the Grove Arcade in downtown Asheville for Chancellor-elect Anne
Ponder, who arrives October 1, and her husband, Christopher Brookhouse.
The apartment will serve as temporary housing until the new facility is
completed. Working in partnership with the Grove Arcade management, the
Chancellor will be able to use the arcade’s meeting venues and public
space for University programs and activities. Cost of renting the
apartment will be paid for by the UNC Asheville Foundation using private
funds donated specifically for that purpose, Massey said
- Merianne Epstein, UNC Asheville Public Information Director,
828/251-6676; pager 257-5501