Aesthetics Review Committee

Last Revised:

Responsible University Administrator: Vice Chancellor, Business & Finance

Responsible University Office: Campus Planning & Environment

Policy Contact: Emily Deeker


This policy applies to all project proposals, temporary and permanent, that impact the exterior aesthetics of the campus.

Policy Statement

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) Chancellor has established the Aesthetics Review Committee (ARC) and its function of reviewing and making recommendations on projects that could have a significant impact on the exterior aesthetics of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campuses. All project proposals, including temporary installations, that could have an aesthetic impact are to be reviewed by ARC.

Reason for Policy

To maintain and promote the planning objectives, architectural and aesthetic character of UNL.


ARC Process
All UNL project proposals for items with an exterior aesthetic impact, including exterior signage; or exterior facing signage, or banners, must be submitted to ARC for review. Project proposals shall be submitted to the ARC Chair and it shall be their responsibility to refer to ARC those proposals that will have a significant impact on the exterior aesthetics of the UNL campuses. Refer to definitions section for specific information on project proposals that shall be reviewed by ARC.

ARC is advisory to the Vice Chancellor for Business and Finance (VC). ARC's recommendations and the VC’s decisions are required to be consistent with campus planning goals and objectives set forth in the current campus master plan and architectural and landscape guidelines. During reviews, ARC will share observations and comments with the proposers. At the conclusion of the review, ARC shall make recommendations to the professionals who are developing these projects. ARC shall recommend to the VC (1) approval, (2) approval contingent upon specific modifications, or (3) disapproval of projects. It will be the ARC chair’s responsibility to transmit committee recommendations to the VC. It will be the responsibility of the VC to consider ARC’s recommendations and either approve or disapprove proposed projects in a timely manner. For Board of Regents projects, Program Statements and Intermediate Design Review (IDR) documents shall not be forwarded to the Board of Regents Business Affairs committee without ARC review.

If the VC disagrees with the ARC's recommendations, he/she shall ask ARC for further consideration. If consensus cannot be reached, the issue shall be forwarded to the Chancellor for a decision. It will be the responsibility of the VC to see that ARC meets its responsibilities in a timely and effective manner, and that decisions are transmitted to the proposers.

Note: ARC meetings will generally be held mornings of the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month at 1901 Y Street. Items shall be scheduled sufficiently in advance to reserve time on the given day. Review information for the project shall be submitted to the chair no later than 1 week prior to the scheduled meeting where the project will be reviewed. At the chair’s discretion, projects with limited impact can be reviewed and commented on electronically by the ARC members. ARC meeting schedule may periodically be revised due to the teaching schedules of committee members; confirm meeting dates with chair.

The proposer of a project proposal disapproved by the VC may (1) cancel the project, (2) accept design modifications recommended by ARC and resubmit the project, or (3) appeal the action. All appeals shall be routed through the VC, to the Chancellor for review and decisions. The VC will provide ARC with copies of all appeals that are sent forward. The Chancellor’s response will be communicated to the appellants of the decision, the VC and ARC in a timely manner.

The ARC shall consist of the Director of Campus Planning (chair), Campus Architect (or designee), the Campus Landscape Architect (or designee), the Dean of the College of Architecture (or designee), and one faculty member from the Academic Planning Committee. The Academic Planning Committee shall appoint the faculty member to a two-year term on ARC.

The ARC and the associated aesthetics review process shall be subject to periodic review by the Chancellor, who may modify, maintain or terminate the committee and process at his/her discretion.


Project proposal – Any undertaking of exterior facilities remodeling, altering, renovating or maintenance; or an addition to, or new construction of any building or structure; development of the campus landscape; or the placement of a work of art outside of the Sheldon Sculpture Garden, exterior signage, banners (refer to the UNL Banner Policy) or other improvement of real property.

Minor projects (under $2,000,000) – All minor projects must be reviewed by the ARC early in the design process. If a significant change in a project's design or site development is proposed after ARC has reviewed and commented, then the project shall be submitted and reviewed by ARC again. If ARC determines a project to be particularly sensitive, it will make an additional recommendation to have the project reviewed by the Chancellor.

Major Projects ($2,000,000 and over) – All major projects must be reviewed by ARC during development of the Program Statement and early in the Schematic Design prior to Intermediate Design Review. ARC review of major projects may include University of Nebraska representation from Facilities Planning and Construction. If a significant change in a project’s design or site development is proposed after ARC has reviewed and commented on the Schematic Design, then the project shall be submitted and reviewed by ARC again. The VC will forward a summary of the project review materials and the recommendations of ARC to the Chancellor for comment. The project will not continue until Chancellor approval is

Landscape – The design, location, construction of significant landscape that is not previously approved or addressed in the campus landscape master plan.


  • This policy was reformatted in 2020. No content edits were made.