AMS goes ahead with JDUC plans

Executive to release report in April outlining plans to spend $1.2 million in revitalization funds

A plan to revitalize the JDUC will be released before the end of the academic year.
A plan to revitalize the JDUC will be released before the end of the academic year.
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The AMS executive announced last night that they are currently hiring a consultant to finalize the JDUC revitalization plan before their term ends.

Eril Berkok, AMS President, said at Assembly last night that the Executive, Executive Director and Student Centre Officer were excited to be moving forward with a plan for the JDUC, which will be finalized in April.

The AMS collected the fund via the Queen’s Student Centre Fee. Under an agreement with the University, any projects financed with this fund must begin before April 2015.

The plan, Berkok said, would be “multi-phased” using a consultant, and updates will be released until the plan is finalized.

The space that had held Signatures Hair Salon until this past summer will hold a new tenant, he said.

“We’ve been in talks to find a new commercial tenant for that lease. We have made an offer but cannot go into detail,” he said.

Berkok said he would go into further detail next Assembly.

During the last two AMS elections, the use of the JDUC revitalization fund of $1.2 million was a focus for candidates.

In their initial campaign, Berkok, Pritchard and former teammate Peter Green had committed to a process whereby student focus groups would choose how they wanted the JDUC to be renovated and upgraded. “Eril, T.K. and Nicola feel that they want to make some good movement on [the JDUC] before they leave office,” said Annie Orvis, Student Centre Officer.

Orvis said the revitalization has been a central focus of the AMS since last term.

“Hiring a consultant to help us through this process [is] the most responsible thing we could do with the money,” she said.

Orvis said the decision on what aspects of the JDUC will be revitalized haven’t been decided yet.

“It’s basically just a step, it’s not that we’ve decided and that students haven’t been consulted,” she said. “It’s just an update on what’s going on.’

The AMS met with Physical Plant Services, including them in the revitalization process in order to decide what is feasible, Orvis added.

“We wanted them to get on board with it, to get on the same page and to share a vision on what we want the JDUC to look like,” she said.

Orvis said that one of the major things that could be improved in the JDUC is the lighting.

“Where the picnic tables are [in the JDUC], it’s not a great welcoming space for students,” she said.

“What I would like to see happening is for it to be the hub of campus, to return to campus … it’s really exciting to see money going into it.”

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