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June 24, 2014

Design phase underway at OU for $12 million shelters

NORMAN — University of Oklahoma President David L. Boren announced on Monday that MA Plus, which was selected to design OU tornado shelters, is nearing completion of planning for $12 million tornado shelters at OU. The project is an expansion of campus storm shelters to house students living in University housing.

Out of concern for students’ safety, Boren asked that University procedures be reviewed and updated for OU’s Norman campus for the 2014 tornado season. OU also sought the advice of consultants with special expertise in this area to help develop those plans.

“The University will be investing $12 million funded by funds OU receives under Section 13 of the state constitution to better protect our students from tornados and severe storms,” Boren said. “The safety of our students is our number one priority.”

In September 2013, at Boren’s request, the OU Board of Regents approved the selection of MA Plus to help design a campus system of additional storm shelters. At that time, maps were distributed to students and posted in student housing indicating the locations of existing shelters to be used while additional space is being developed.

The new storm shelters are planned for locations near Walker and Couch Centers as well as Traditions East, Traditions West and Kraettli apartments and will provide additional storm shelter space for approximately 4,000 OU students with access more closely located to their OU housing.

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