UNT dedicated Jody's Fountain and Onstead Plaza and Promenade - which were created in a series of renovations to the Library Mall - this spring with a formal ceremony.
Onstead Plaza and Promenade were funded by donations from Charles Onstead, a 1947 alumnus, the Charles and Jody Onstead Foundation and the Robert and Kay Onstead Foundation. Jody's Fountain is named in honor of Jo Ann Park Onstead, a 1944 graduate who was a distinguished elementary school teacher with a passion for art education.
"Charles and Jody Onstead met on campus as students at North Texas and wanted to establish a place that students could relax and reflect," says Brent Davison, vice president for advancement.
Onstead Plaza and Promenade includes a water feature between Jody's Fountain and Cartwright Plaza, as well as renovated and improved landscaping, paving and seating areas. Jody's Fountain, which was restored for use as a working fountain in April 2005, was renovated and refaced in fieldstone.
Robert Onstead, a 1954 alumnus, was named a distinguished alumnus in 2004 and was one of the founders of the Randall's grocery store chain in the Houston area.
The $1.36-million renovation of the Library Mall began during the 2004-05 academic year as part of a campus beautification initiative. Tall mast lighting in the area was removed and replaced by pedestrian scale lighting fixtures. It was later refined by the university's new Master Plan.
Work on a waterfall feature - named in honor of Louise Evans, an alumna - began in early 2006 but stopped when UNT received the gifts from the Onsteads to expand the mall renovations.
Charlie Jackson, UNT's executive director of facilities, says the Library Mall area has always been a central focus of the campus, but over the years its modifications were "piecemeal" and didn't maintain a standard theme.
"During the master planning process, it was proposed that the area be revitalized to provide a campus gathering place with shade trees, fountains and new seating as well as an entrance to the central campus from Highland Street," he says.