University of Illinois System

October 2023 Newsletter

Posted on 11/03/2023

Upcoming Retainer Agreement Policy/Process Update

UOCP is updating the Retainer Agreement Policy found on the UOCP website and is asking for university input and review before finalizing. Proposed updates include incorporating language that:

  • Original retainer agreements can be established as either:
    • one year agreement with option to annually renew for up to three additional years, or
    • one 2-year agreement with an option to renew for another 2 years, for a total of 4 years.
  • Retainer agreements may be used on individual projects with an expected total project cost greater than $5,000,000 and/or in a supporting role for outside architect of record/engineer of record (AOR/EOR) for project management services, on-site observations, peer cost estimates, peer design review, feasibility studies or otherwise approved by the AVP.

In addition, the proposed policy changes will outline requirements of performance evaluations of the PSC for each Retainer Contract Work Order in VSA. CCUs shall submit a completed “Procurement Policy Board (PBB) Questions for Retainer Contract Renewal” document that identifies actual percentages of Retainer vendor and subconsultant BEP/VBP participation used to date on any Retainer Work Orders completed as part of this Professional Services Retainer Agreement. When a renewing vendor falls short of meeting the contracted BEP goal as identified in Vendor Evaluations, the vendor and contracting University shall be required to complete a form to request a reduced BEP goal for consideration and approval, for the current renewal, only.

Facility Condition Assessment (FCA) Updates

The FCA is a System-led comprehensive building assessment for UIUC, UIC and UIS that will identify both current deficiencies and building systems in need of future repair or replacement. CannonDesign is performing the assessments and field-visits began in late September. Upon completion of the engagement, currently expected in late 2024, information will be maintained in an interactive database. The initial assessment plan covers more than 21 million square feet of space across the System. Each university has provided CannonDesign with extensive information to help them complete their assessments, and to provide them with issues or deficiencies known or identified by university facility managers.

Cycle 24.1 January Systems Updates

UOCP and AITS are currently working on updates for Systems and Process including Contracts +, PRZM, FCPWeb, VSA-CAPS, PSP, and multiple policy/process documents. All updates will be complete and published at the end of January 2024.

University of Illinois Springfield – Innovation Center Expansion

JGMA Architecture & Design

Exterior View

The UIC Innovation Center Expansion is designed to serve as a bridge between UIC and its corporate partnerships and as a destination for innovation and collaboration throughout the Illinois Innovation Network. The goal of creating a new state-of-the-art collaborative space is to provide a facility optimized for integrative work among multidisciplinary teams, expand the advanced educational experience for which the UIC Innovation Center is known, and showcase the groundbreaking work conducted there to attract new corporate partners.

The design of the building is focused on its common circulation path, which encloses an exterior courtyard and provides a curated tour for guests, visually demonstrating the story of the flexible and adaptable innovation studios within. The projects conducted at the Innovation Center are simultaneously ideas to be celebrated and shared but may also involve sensitive intellectual property that needs protection. These seemingly opposing needs for transparency and privacy are resolved with the building’s main sustainability strategies, including the perforated metal panel rain screen solar shading over a glass enclosure, and an undulating landscape of native perennials to obscure views while supporting biodiversity and a natural ecology of stormwater infiltration.

Interior View

While the architects, JGMA, are contracted directly with the Illinois Capital Development Board (CDB), the project has been a close collaboration between CDB, JGMA, the UIC Innovation Center Administration, the UIC Department of Planning, Sustainability, and Project Management (PSPM), and the University System Office of Capital Programs. The team has thus far successfully navigated the Program Analysis, Schematic Design, and Design Development project phases. Each phase has concluded with a review, comments, and ultimately approval from CDB, the UIC Innovation Center Administration, and UIC PSPM. Furthermore, after each design phase, to ensure compliance and continuity with the UIC campus’ design standards and master plan, JGMA presented the project to UIC’s appointed Design Review Committee (DRC), which includes notable faculty, staff, and outside architectural reviewers for their approval.

At the conclusion of the Design Development phase, the team conducted a thorough value analysis and implemented the necessary design modifications to bring the project within budget during this inflationary market, while maintaining the overall design intent, programmed spaces, and functionality. The final step of the process has recently finished and included separate design presentations of the project to UIC Chancellor Marie Lynn Miranda, University President Timothy L. Killeen, and the Audit, Budget, Finance, and Facilities (ABFF) committee of the University of Illinois Board of Trustees. The project team is enthusiastic to move forward with the Construction Documents phase, construction, and ultimately a finished project that satisfies the UIC Innovation Center’s needs and maintains the caliber of design expected by the University System and the University of Illinois Chicago.

Celebrating Denise Rowe’s 30+ Years of Dedication to the University of Illinois

“Starting during a Pandemic can be a rough experience, but with your professionalism and positive attitude, you helped make my transition seamless. Thank you for your many years of service to the University and the last few with me. You will be missed as a valued member of our team. Wishing you all the best in the next phase of your life!”
~ Mike Wilson, Assistant Vice President, Capital Programs and Utility Services

“Denise’s contributions to our office are too numerous to count. While her professional accomplishments are many, what will stay with us (and what we will miss most) is the constant support, sharing of a smile, peaceful demeanor, and calming presence. We’ve played a small role in her long career but will feel the void and miss her tremendously.”
~ Angela Jacobs, Angie Stanford, Erin Dalton, Capital Programs & Utility Services

“I worked with Denise for almost ten years in the Utilities Administration department in support of Prairieland Energy, Inc (PEI). During this time, we worked together frequently to coordinate and prepare materials that facilitated PEI Board meetings. As a result, I developed a great deal of respect for her experience, professionalism, and network of relationships. Her contributions to the University were significant and she deserves a wonderful retirement. Congratulations and best wishes!”
~ Anthony Spurlock, Associate Director of Budget Resources Planning, UIUC Facilities & Services

“Denise has been a staple resource for myself, and many offices throughout the University. Her presence, professionalism, and expertise will be incredibly missed! We are so happy for her to enjoy retirement!!”
~ Kayci Puckett, Director Procurement Services, State University Procurement

“Denise – oh my, where to start as I have only been with the university just shy of 21 years. I say only as Denise has been with the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign for just over 30. Over the years she has been instrumental in the growth, development, and work of so many people and I count myself as one of those who have benefited from her extensive knowledge and abilities. Denise is never one to say, “I don’t know” or “not my area” or “I can’t help” but rather, “I’m not sure, let me see what I can find out for you” or “I’m not sure but I know who can help us.” Her bright personality and positive attitude are infectious, and I cannot remember a time that Denise didn’t lift my day even if it was just a simple “Hello, how are you?” Conversations typically began with Denise asking how I am and what she could help me with even if she was calling in her role to complete a task of her own. Denise always made me feel valued and I will miss her bright smile, her positivity, and her eagerness to help us all do better. Thank you, Denise, for your friendship and I am truly, truly excited for this next path before you!”
~Jill Odom, Administrative Assistant, VP Chief Financial Officer, System

“I am so very Happy for Denise as she reaches this incredible chapter of her life. It is difficult to express my gratitude for her friendship and all that she has done for the University of Illinois System. I know the System is better off for having Denise all these years, and I know I am certainly better for knowing her. Congratulations Denise, have a wonderful retirement.”
~ Aaron Carter, Assistant VP, Procurement Services

“Congratulations on your well-deserved retirement! I am so happy and excited for you. I know this will give you more time with your girls and son. Along with all of your beautiful grandchildren. ENJOY!! Your professionalism, knowledge, friendship, and positive attitude have been invaluable over the years. As you move on to the next chapter in your life, I want to wish you the very best. Please stay in touch, I always enjoy our “catching-up session”. You will be missed!”
~ Marcy Frerichs, Administrative Assistant, Human Resource System

“Congratulations on a well-deserved retirement. It has been a pleasure working with you over the years. I wish you all the best in the days ahead!”
~ Sean McKendall, Software Engineer Lead, System AITS

“Congratulations on your retirement Denise! I wish you the very best!”
~Joda Morton, Director of Enterprise Risk Management, System

“Happy Retirement -- enjoy your permanent weekend!”
~Joellyn Nieminski, Retired Contract Specialist, UIC

“I have had the joy and pleasure of working with Denise Rowe at the University since 2018. I truly appreciate Denise’s kind spirit, calm demeanor, willingness to go above and beyond and her resourcefulness over the years, Denise will truly be missed. Best wishes to Denise in her next chapter.”
~ Alaina Davis, Senior Contract Specialist and Interim Assistant Director for Contract Administration, F & S

“Well, it IS definitely a time to celebrate!! It seems like just yesterday that you were helping to solve an issue with your usual kind words and positive attitude. We were all fortunate to work with you through some challenging and crazy times. Warmest congratulations!! Whatever you do in your next chapter, enjoy yourself knowing that you earned & completely deserve this happy time of life.”
~ Joe Vitosky, Retired Assistant VP, Capital Programs and Real Estate