University of Washington Policy Directory

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*Formerly part of the University Handbook
Presidential Orders

Executive Order

No. 66

The University of Washington Architectural Commission

1. Establishment of the Commission

The Architectural Commission (commission) is established to advise the University President on matters concerning the design, function, performance, and environmental integrity of the University's buildings, landscapes, infrastructure, and urban amenities.

In its advisory capacity, the commission reviews and evaluates plans and projects that affect the aesthetic character and composition of the University's three campuses. It reviews the selection of building sites, the design of new buildings and public spaces, major additions and modifications to these elements, and campus plans; and it issues general and specific recommendations related to these elements, and to design and planning policies that ensure the aesthetic and historic integrity of the public settings of University life. The commission assists the University President in the selection of architects and consultants for all projects that influence the physical and aesthetic character of its campuses, and periodically reviews the design of these projects through all phases of their development. In addition, the commission periodically reviews and evaluates the University's campus master and subsidiary plans, and advises the University President on related architectural and environmental issues as they may arise, including historic conservation.

2. Statement of Organization and Function

  A. Number of Members and Representation

Nine voting members and four non-voting ex-officio members constitute the University of Washington Architectural Commission. The University President appoints all nine voting academic and professional members: the Dean of the College of Built Environments, or his or her designee; four design professionals, including at least two registered architects and one registered landscape architect; a representative of the University of Washington Faculty Senate recommended by the Senate Chair, who shall serve as Vice Chair of the commission; a representative of student government jointly recommended by the President of the Associated Students of the University of Washington and the President of the Graduate and Professional Student Senate; and two voting members-at-large from within or outside the University community, nominated by the University President. The four non-voting ex-officio members of the commission include the Senior Vice President for Finance and Facilities, the Associate Vice President for Capital Projects, the University Architect, and the University Landscape Architect.

The Chair of the commission may designate additional ex-officio members as appropriate.

  B. Terms of Membership

Each professional member will be appointed to a term of four years; when the University President fills a vacancy among the professional members, the appointee will serve for the remainder of the unexpired term. The faculty and representatives and members-at-large will serve a term of two years. Members of the commission may succeed themselves and may serve beyond the appointed term, until the University President appoints a successor.

Wherever possible, the terms of professional and at-large members will be staggered, such that no two appointments expire in the same year.

  C. Officers of the Commission, Quorum, Meetings, and Procedures

The Dean of the College of Built Environments (or his or her recommended designee as approved and appointed by the University President) will chair the commission and preside at its meetings. In the event the Chair is absent from a regularly scheduled meeting of the commission, the Vice Chair will preside. When and where appropriate, the Chair will represent the commission at any meeting where University groups, departments, or academic units seek the perspective of the commission.

Any five voting members will constitute a quorum for the transaction of commission business. Actions constituting commission recommendations must secure the approval of a majority of those present.

The Vice Provost for Planning and Budgeting shall authorize appropriate compensation for the professional members.

The University of Washington Office of the Vice Provost for Planning and Budgeting, through the agency of the University Architect, will assist the commission in the coordination of its meetings and minutes, and in the preparation and dissemination of official correspondence.

The Chair of the commission, working in cooperation with the University Architect, may from time to time appoint and convene sub-committees to act on behalf of the commission to expedite the timely review of major projects; review smaller projects that would not otherwise fall under the commission's purview; and undertake special reviews or assignments of projects or the review of other issues related to the urban, architectural, and aesthetic integrity of the University.

  D. Advisory Responsibilities and Referral Function

The Architectural Commission advises the University President on the planning and development of the University's primary campuses, urban properties, remote facilities, and other significant environmental assets. Its role includes recommending architectural and planning principles and policies appropriate and advantageous in guiding the physical growth, development, and conservation of the University's buildings and grounds and their various physical settings and contexts. Except for minor interior remodeling and renovations, the University refers all campus architectural and planning matters to the commission for its review and recommendations.

  E. Comprehensive Planning

The commission will make recommendations concerning the preparation of a comprehensive general plan for the physical and aesthetic development of the University's campuses, including and especially design principles to guide future growth. The commission will periodically review existing, proposed, and revised campus plans. In its ongoing review the progress of the campus design and planning efforts, the commission may recommend the selection of firms and consultants for specific projects, and periodically issue related recommendations for approval by the University President. These recommendations shall be documented and may be revised from time to time for the purpose of providing a current guide for the design and performance of campus grounds and buildings. In making recommendations involving campus open space, landscape design, and plantings, the commission will seek the consultation of the University Landscape Advisory Committee.

  F. Special Projects, Design Requirements, and Referral Functions

The commission will review the urban and architectural design, performance, and environmental consequences of all projects that influence the character and integrity of the University's campuses including new construction; additions to existing buildings when such additions affect the exterior appearance of buildings; major interior renovations of existing significant buildings; and projects involving the development of the campus grounds, including landscaping, sculpture, monuments, memorials, and public art.

The commission will advise and assist the project designer and the University in the development of all major projects. It will review such projects during and upon completion of feasibility study, prior to the commencement of detailed planning work, and following the commencement of the design process; it will guide the project designers, review the progress of designs, and suggest modifications and adjustments as necessary and appropriate up to the approval of a fully developed design for construction. The commission's recommendations will embody or set forth principles and criteria as they relate to campus plans and to the principles of campus design and such other recommendations deemed proper and important in the design of the project. The commission may recommend approval of the design of projects, or recommend changes in the design. Recommended changes that significantly affect the scope of work must secure the concurrence and approval of the Senior Vice President for Finance and Facilities prior to their implementation.

  G. Recommendations for Awarding of Design Contracts

The voting members of the commission shall make recommendations to the University President for the awarding of major design contracts for new construction and additions to existing buildings when such additions affect the exterior appearance of buildings and major planning and site studies. Major design contracts include any contract that requires the approval of the Board of Regents.

  H. Procedure

In its meetings and deliberations the formal procedures of the commission will be governed by Robert's Rules of Order, latest revised edition.

  I. Conflict of Interest

Commission members or their firms are not eligible to accept design or major consulting contracts with the University of Washington on any projects during the time of their tenure on the commission.

December 3, 2013 [Effective January 1, 2014].