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Innovative Education in Downtown Orlando

UCF Downtown is a world-class 21st-century campus for digital media, communication, public service, and health-related programs in an innovative, urban environment.

In partnership with Valencia College, the new campus serves more than 7,000 students in the heart of downtown Orlando. In addition to academics, UCF Downtown offers students a complete campus experience with student housing, dining, recreation, wellness, volunteer and service opportunities, as well as student clubs and organizations.

All of the furniture will be mobile, including the instructor podium, and there is a projector in every room.

Downtown Classrooms

Flexible and Technology Enhanced Classrooms

Led by the Office of Instructional Resources, the furniture and technology in downtown campus classrooms helps facilitate active learning. Research supports that active learning strategies improve student learning outcomes.

UCF is moving to a model where all classrooms can better support active learning methods of teaching. Active learning is not a technology, nor a furniture solution. Active learning is a teaching practice facilitated with technology and furniture, but at its core is achieved through the activities practiced in the space by faculty and students.

All of the furniture is mobile, including the instructor podium, and there is a projector in every room.

There will be multiple whiteboards throughout the room.
There are multiple whiteboards throughout the room.

All rooms are designed the same way so that everyone has a consistent experience across the entire campus.
All rooms are designed the same way for a consistent experience across the entire campus.

The classrooms at UCF Downtown are designed to feel familiar while also encouraging a variety of teaching practices:

All of the furniture is mobile, including the instructor podium. The in-room computer can be controlled with a wireless mouse and keyboard allowing the faculty member or presenter to be anywhere in the classroom.

An optional wireless collaboration system called Intel Unite is available at UCF Downtown. The system allows you to bring a personal device (phone, tablet, or laptop) and mirror the desktop to the computer in the room. This means you can have a computer in every class that already has your applications, documents, and other personalization preferences set up the way you want them, every time, every course, every semester.

The multimedia equipment is smaller and in a corner, out of the way of the students and faculty so that almost the entire room becomes usable floor space for teaching and learning activities.

There are multiple whiteboards throughout the room.

There is a projector in every room, just as there are in existing classrooms. Some rooms have additional monitors on the other walls that will mirror the content on the projector. No matter how the furniture is arranged or where the student looks they will be able to see the content.

All of the conference rooms have a large flat-panel monitor and a device on the conference table that will allow for connecting to the display.

All rooms are designed the same way so that no matter who uses the room everyone has a consistent experience across the entire campus.

dr phillips academic commons

Downtown Construction

The downtown campus provides UCF and Valencia College an incredible opportunity to think differently, look at new approaches in the classroom and better support students.

-Mike Kilbride, Assistant Vice President, UCF Downtown

From Concept to Construction

UCF President Emeritus John Hitt announced the university’s decision to establish a downtown Orlando campus during the UCF Focus Breakfast in September 2014.

Since then, the university created the UCF Downtown committees, which spent more than a year exploring everything from student services and educational programs to transportation and facilities. The project was approved by the Florida Board of Governors in 2016, and design and build teams were selected that summer. Construction began in downtown Orlando in Summer 2017. The campus officially opened in August 2019, with housing, parking and dedicated transportation to and from UCF’s main campus.

ucf downtown - dr phillips academic commons

Dr. Phillips Academic Commons

About Dr. Phillips Academic Commons

Dr. Phillips Academic Commons features four stories of active learning spaces, including classrooms, the downtown library, study and tutor spaces, a moot court, and academic offices. The building is a state-of-the-art learning facility that will overlook Creative Village’s central park, a green space for outdoor concerts and events, scheduled to open in Spring 2020.

Project Team:

  • Architect: Robert AM Stern / SchenkelShultz
  • Contractor: Skanska
  • Project Cost: $66M
rendering of downtown ucf dr phillips academic commons courtyard
Renderings of Dr. Phillips Academic Commons
rendering of downtown ucf dr phillips academic commons and student housing
rendering of downtown ucf dr phillips academic commons with downtown
rendering of downtown ucf dr phillips academic commons with parramore
rendering of downtown ucf dr phillips academic commons and student housing with skyline
The UCF Center for Emerging Media is located in downtown Orlando and home to a variety of academic, artistic and innovative programs.

UCF Communication and Media Building

About Communication and Media Building

The UCF Communication and Media Building (formerly Center for Emerging Media) is home to the Florida Interactive Entertainment Academy, the Center for Research and Education in Arts, Technology, and Entertainment (CREATE), and other academic and innovative programs.  CMB continues to be an academic hub for the campus. Prior to the campus opening, CMB underwent renovations to reflect 21st-century learning environments and is the new academic home to students, faculty and staff in the Nicholson School of Communication and Media.

Project Team:

  • Architect: Schenkel Schultz Architecture
  • Project Cost: $5.75M

The Florida Interactive Entertainment Academy, UCF’s graduate-level video game design program, was one of the first programs based at CEM.

The UCF Downtown parking garage will include license plate recognition technology, security cameras, real-time space counts by floor and electric charging stations.

UCF Downtown Parking Garage

About the Parking Garage

The 580 space, four-story garage will include license plate recognition technology, security cameras, real-time space counts by floor and electric charging stations. Additionally, the ground floor will house a university store operated by Barnes & Noble, campus services and storage space for campus supplies.

Project Team:

  • Architect: Walker Parking Consulting and C.T. Hsu + Associates Architects
  • Contractor: PCL Construction
  • Project Cost: $14.6M
The UCF Downtown parking garage is four-stories and has 580 spaces.
The Collaborative also features space for individual or group studying with views of downtown Orlando and Creative Village Central Park.

UCF Downtown Student Housing

About Student Housing

UnionWest at Creative Village is a privately developed, 15-story building with more than 600 beds on the top floors. The lower levels will have retail and academic learning space, including Valencia College’s Walt Disney School of Culinary Arts and Hospitality. A parking garage for housing students and visitors to the campus is also attached to the building.

Project Team:

  • Architect: Baker Barrios Architects and CannonDesign
  • Contractor: Batson-Cook
  • Owner: Ustler Development, Inc. and DEVEN
Renderings of UCF Downtown Student Housing
The Collaborative, located on the 6th floor, includes an outdoor patio overlooking downtown Orlando and Creative Village Central Park.
UnionWest at Creative Village will feature more than 600 beds for student housing.

 WiFi

how to connect to your downtown campus wifi

UCF and Valencia College students, faculty and staff have access to fast and convenient Wi-Fi at the new downtown campus. Follow the steps below to connect your electronic devices to the network for the best wireless experience:

UCF USERS

Step 1: Open your Wi-Fi setting and select DTCampus as the network

Step 2: Log in using your NID and NID password

VALENCIA USERS

Step 1: Open your Wi-Fi setting and select DTCampus as the network

Step 2: Log in using your Downtown Atlas ID and password

GUESTS

Step 1: Open your Wi-Fi setting and select DTCAMPUS-Guest as the network

Step 2: On the window that appears, select the link at the bottom that reads “Need to register for guest access?”

Step 3: Provide the information requested in the registration form and select “register”. You will receive an email and a text message with your login credentials.

Step 4: Sign on using the email provided and four-digit password sent to you

Step 5: After accepting the terms and conditions, you will have access to the Wi-Fi network for 18 hours. Once the time limit is up, you will have to obtain a new temporary login password using steps 1–4 in order to gain access again.

If you have trouble connecting to the network, please contact UCF IT 407-823-5117.

GUEST WIFI INSTRUCTIONS (PDF)