It’s going to take some hefty cash for San Diego State University to finally find its way, judging by a new campus navigation project described at a recent board meeting of the school’s nonprofit Campanile Foundation, chaired by ex–San Diego city manager Jack McGrory. Called “Destination SDSU,” the initiative calls for the construction of elaborate new gates on main entries to the campus, as well as the remodeling of the big electronic billboard alongside Interstate 8.
To kick off the project, university president Elliot Hirshman is looking to scrape together $1.6 million to build the first big gate at SDSU’s Campanile Drive and Montezuma Road entrance. As the minutes put it, “There’s a significant challenge in terms of knowing when people are on campus as there is no destination point. Part of the project is to create gates or entrances in multiple areas so people can know 1.) that they are at San Diego State and 2.) that this is what we stand for; we have a certain tradition, history, and values and approaches.”
There was at least one skeptic. Boardmember Mike Pack “questioned the amount quoted for that particular project. He thinks it can be done for a lot less and in less time,” the minutes say. SDSU vice president for vice president for university relations & development chief executive officer Mary Ruth Carleton told the board “there will be naming opportunities for a gate/entrance; i.e., Smith Gate or Smith Entrance.”