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Like The Cicadas, The Crowds "Swarm" On UC’s Campus For MainStreet's Preview Celebration

Amid the emerging cicadas, May 21 officially opens the first phase of the University of Cincinnati's MainStreet. Long after the cicadas have gone, MainStreet will be buzzing 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Date: 5/3/2004 12:00:00 AM
By: Dawn Fuller
Phone: (513) 556-1823
Photos By: Andrew Higley

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More construction fences are coming down at the University of Cincinnati, as cicadas and excitement buzz around MainStreet – the place to live, learn, work and play. MainStreet officially opens with a “virtual” ribbon-cutting ceremony at 5 p.m. Friday, May 21, inside the Fifth Third Arena at Shoemaker Center. That concludes President Nancy L. Zimpher’s inauguration ceremony and kicks off the MainStreet opening celebration.

Tangeman University Center

The $233.8 million MainStreet project is the student life-centered core of the university’s Master Plan – an endeavor that is turning what was once a campus cramped with crumbling buildings and asphalt into a thriving center of research, academics, campus living, green space and spectacular architecture that has drawn national attention.

“There is nothing that better exemplifies the integration of academics and student life than MainStreet,” says Mitchel D. Livingston, UC vice president for Student Affairs and Services. “MainStreet is operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week, in a social, cultural and academic setting. Students feel they are a part of an active learning community. It is a place where students feel like they belong.”

And “belonging” is a vital factor in a student’s college success. National research suggests that the more connections students have to campus – in and out of the classroom – the more successful they’ll be in earning that degree and in feeling satisfied with their programs of study.

Steven Sayers, associate vice president for UC Campus Services, adds that students, staff and faculty played a primary role in MainStreet’s conception. “MainStreet evolved from more than 5,000 survey responses from students, faculty and staff about what they wanted in a student center, food service, housing, retail and a recreation center. There were more than 30 focus groups supplying input for the concept of MainStreet over the 1998-2002 timeframe. That input included calls for a brighter student union, more convenience and service and more variety in food selections. All of those ideas went into the planning of the facilities.”

The MainStreet Celebration kicks off with the ribbon cutting ceremony Friday, May 21 at 5 p.m. and concludes with the Sigma Sigma Carnival, which takes place Saturday, May 22 from 7 p.m.-1 a.m. on Sigma Sigma Commons. In between, look for samplings from the TUC food court, special MainStreet tours and events for everyone, including children. The MainStreet Celebration is open to the public as well as the campus community and UC alumni.

MainStreet Preview Celebration Events

University of Cincinnati MainStreet Project

Walking on MainStreet

MainStreet Web Site

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