Committee Begins Detailed Discussions of Presidential Facility Options

The independent fact-finding committee charged with assessing the current state of the Idaho State University Presidential Residence Facility began its most recent meeting by evaluating the current Servel facility.

The committee’s discussions offered differing perspectives related to the positives and negatives of the current facility including the historic significance of the facility and the charm of the building.
However, the committee outlined numerous drawbacks of the facility including safety concerns, space and parking limitations, accessibility concerns and cost of needed renovations.

“Our discussions have been frank and honest,” explained Valerie Hoybjerg, committee chairwoman. “One of the issues we have to consider is the cost of tradition as it relates to the Servel House, which has had a rich history for both ISU and the Pocatello community.”

The committee then turned its discussions to the facility’s purpose, as outlined in the Idaho State Board of Education’s (SBOE) governing policies and procedures. Specifically, this included discussions related to the building’s business purpose, living residence, reflection of the institution’s image and ongoing maintenance. The committee also discussed needs related to technology upgrades, parking, energy efficiency and tradition.

In order to thoroughly explore all options, the committee has asked for an external market value assessment of the Servel property. It is also working with an architectural designer to draw up reconstruction plans and develop an estimate for the work based on the state of the current facility.

The committee includes representatives from the University’s alumni, faculty, staff, students and community leaders. At the conclusion of its work the committee will provide a written recommendation to the administration for possible solutions that best fulfill the current and future needs of the University.

Suggestions and comments for the committee can be emailed to servelcomm@isu.edu.