STEM high school rendering

Update on proposed STEM Education Center

FAQ provides details on timeline, impacts

May 16, 2023
Author: Imran Ghori
May 16, 2023

UC Riverside and the Riverside Unified School District expect to release an environment impact report for a proposed STEM Education Center this summer.

In advance of the environmental document, UCR has created a Frequently Asked Questions page with information on the proposed project. The FAQ includes details on its anticipated timing, funding, and impacts. 

The environmental document is expected to be released in July or August and will be circulated for 45 days. A public hearing is expected in late August or early to mid-September.

The project has been under discussion since 2015 when the campus and school district agreed on plans to expand Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, or STEM, opportunities with a partnership that builds on the success of the district’s Riverside STEM Academy.

The school district will fully fund the STEM Education Center’s construction costs and is responsible for planning, design, construction, and operations. UCR is providing the land – an approximately 6-acre campus site at the southwest corner of Blaine Street and Canyon Crest Drive.

The proposed center, consisting of a three-story facility with about 30 classrooms, labs, and other uses, would serve about 800 students in grades nine-12 at a time for a total of approximately 1,200 students daily.

The project design is still proceeding and could take up to a year to complete. It will then be submitted to the Division of State Architect for review and approval, which could take eight months. Construction could begin as early as 2026.

Some highlights in the project FAQ page include:

  • No teaching or mentorship responsibilities will be required of UCR faculty. While faculty members may choose to volunteer, none will be required to take on additional responsibilities. The Academic Senate will continue to be consulted as part of the process.
  • The center will have its own lunch facilities and UCR campus eateries should not be affected.
  • No campus parking will be used. The school district will be responsible for providing faculty, staff, and student parking for the center.
  • Recreation fields will be replaced. The campus has programmed new recreational fields into the North District Phase 2 expansion, which is currently in design.

“This is an example of a great partnership between UCR and the RUSD to create a new STEM Education Center for the community,” said Gerry Bomotti, vice chancellor for Planning, Budget, and Administration. “This type of model – a partnership between a research university and a local public school – is pretty common and exists now at several of our sister UC campuses.”

More details on the project are available at the project website.