Regents approve strategic facilities plan, industrial engineering building

Iowa State's 30-year strategic facilities plan provides a framework for renewing and investing in existing buildings whenever possible and replacing them with modern spaces when it's not. It looks at both cost and sustainability considerations in making those decisions. Over the life of the plan, it would refresh 48% of outdated campus space and eliminate half of the university's deferred maintenance log -- currently at about $500 million.

The state Board of Regents approved the plan June 2 during its meeting in Iowa City.

In several enrollment scenarios, a campus space inventory indicates a need for academic and research space, an excess of office space, and adequate student and support spaces. One of the plan goals is to right-size those space assignments.

The plan focuses on four areas for renewal, each of which outlines buildings for renovation and demolition as well as sites for new construction:

  • Osborn Drive (STEM disciplines)
  • Four colleges: Engineering, Design, Agriculture and Life Sciences, Veterinary Medicine (including the VM research institute)
  • New interdisciplinary hubs for instruction (for example, a communications complex)
  • Student affairs, including a student services center and larger health/wellness center

Therkildsen building

The regents approved a budget ($54 million) and project description for the proposed Therkildsen Industrial Engineering Building for the industrial and manufacturing systems engineering department, the final green light required from the regents. The building will be located northwest of Beyer Hall and include teaching and research labs, classrooms, offices and a food cafe. Preliminary work begins later this summer to replace parking spots in Lot 3 this project will eliminate. Connecticut-based SLAM Collaborate is the design-build firm hired in 2019. The cost of the project will be covered by a $42 million gift from alumni C.G. "Turk" and Joyce McEwen Therkildsen and university funds.

Board-mandated free speech training

Representatives from the three universities provided spring semester completion data among students and employees for an online training module, and summarized campus efforts to promote it. In February 2021, the board agreed to provide and require annual training on the First Amendment and free speech for the regent university campus communities. It launched during spring semester.

In response to an inquiry, board counsel Aimee Claeys said she doesn't anticipate the training module will be tweaked for fall semester.

"We'll review it over the summer," she added. "Training isn't static, and we want it to be accurate. As it needs to evolve, we'll be adaptable."


Completion rates at end of spring semester: Free speech training


Faculty and staff


Iowa State






Northern Iowa



*Staff 86%, faculty 68%
**Non-health care employees 62%, health care employees 55%

Wintersteen evaluation

Following its semi-annual performance evaluation of President Wendy Wintersteen, the board approved a $50,000 increase to her base salary, effective July 1, raising her annual salary to $650,000. The board also approved additional deferred compensation for two years (fiscal years 2023-24) of $40,000 annually. This is on top of previously awarded deferred compensation of $200,000 per year covering November 2020-June 2023, and $100,000 per year covering July 2021-June 2023.

"We're very pleased with our university leadership," said board president Michael Richards in announcing the compensation changes for the three campus leaders. "We want to continue with the same leadership team, and this is an indication of our willingness and interest in keeping a steady course as we go forward."

Other Iowa State business

In other business, the regents:

  • Elected the incumbent board leaders, president Michael Richards and president pro tem Sherry Bates, for two-year terms, through April 2024.
  • Directed the universities to, when they're complete, submit FY23 salary policies to executive director Mark Braun for final approval.
  • Approved Iowa State's new B.S. program in healthcare management in the department of management and entrepreneurship, starting this fall.
  • Approved a three-year pilot (July 1, 2022-June 30, 2025) to reimburse benefit-eligible employees for some or all qualified expenses in the adoption of a child. Regent institutions that elect to participate in the program would work with Braun to develop specific procedures. Details about Iowa State's participation will be shared later this month in Inside.
  • Reappointed Bonnie Whalen as university secretary and Pam Cain as university treasurer for the fiscal year beginning July 1.
  • Gave Iowa State permission to begin planning for an estimated $25 million parking lot improvement project at the Iowa State Center that would raise the lots above the 100-year flood plain and add water, power, gas, phone, storm and sanitary lines, to support future development, under about 80% of the lot area south of Center Drive. Six north lots -- A1, A2, B3, B4, C3 and C4 -- are designated for a future phase. As proposed, a combination of university and athletics department funds would be used for this project.