University College Junior Common Room. Maddison Thompson/THE VARSITY

THE University College Literary and Athletics Society (UC Lit) plans to hold a referendum on creating a new levy for improvements to the University College (UC) building.

The new levy would comprise a tuition increase of $30.03 and $13.15 for full-time and part-time students respectively, over a span of 20 years. Even after the proposed increase, UC students would still be paying the second-lowest fees among all seven colleges.

“We want students to experience the amazing potential that our building has, and have the opportunity to use these revitalized and newly implemented spaces themselves before they graduate,” said UC Lit president Amanda Stojcevski. 

The levy is part of a larger $40 million campaign to revitalize the UC building. The campaign includes a new library and reading room at East and West Hall, improvements to the quadrangle, a conference centre at Croft Chapter House, audio-visual systems for all classrooms, a central elevator, and more accessible points of entry. Other funding sources for the project include the Faculty of Arts & Science, the Office of the Vice-President and Provost, the UC Capital Funds, donations from UC alumni, and the Boundless campaign.

Stojcevski stressed that the levy would be specifically allocated for improvements to student spaces. These include renovations to the Junior Common Room (JCR), such as power outlets on the floor, and a student run café at the the tower of the building (UC 376).

Stojcevski also mentioned that the recent flooding of the JCR will actually save the UC Lit time and money in the long run. “Since the cost of the new floor will be covered between the college and insurance as it was damaged out of our control, we now only need to cover the cost of the outlets,” she explained.   

According to Stojcevski, the new flooring of the JCR is expected to be completed within the next few weeks. Other improvements to the JCR will start in May and are scheduled to be completed in September before Frosh Week. The UC Lit hopes to see the café, library, elevator, and reading room completed around January 2017. Details for the quadrangle will be discussed with the Landmark Project, U of T’s initiative to revitalize outdoor public spaces throughout the entire campus.

This is the second time that this referendum has been introduced. In 2014, it was defeated by a margin of six votes.    

UC students will be able to vote online on March 10, between 9:00am and 9:00pm and in-person from 10:00am to 7:00pm.

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