University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

U-Space FAQ

Click on a section header to expand questions contained within.

Access to U-Space

  • Q1: How do I get access to U-Space?
    Go to the OIT Data Security website at Follow the Access Request Form (ARF) 3 step instructions shown at the top of the OIT data security page. Fill out the main form and find the attachment forms for access to the U-Space application. Find the U-Space form under "Miscellaneous Applications." After you have filled out all the forms, fax them to OIT Security at 5-0303 for processing. The OIT Helpline Number is 612-301-HELP should you need assistance. Once approved by OIT Security, they will forward your forms to the Office of Space Management for final approval. We will activate your access and notify you when you can use the U-Space system.
  • What should I do if there is a change to the ASC (Authorizing Space Coordinator) or DSC (Departmental Space Coordinator)?
    Fill out a new Access Request Form.
  • Q3: I have trouble logging in to U-Space using my X500 ID and password.
    Call The University Information Services Center at 5-1830.
  • Q4: I cannot get access to U-Space from my home.
    You must have a VPN (Virtual Private Network) connection. To set up a VPN connection, contact your departmental IT Group for their assistance.

Data Downloads

  • Q5: How can I download space data to use in a spreadsheet or database program?
    Space is available for download from the Data Warehouse Security website at At the Data Warehouse you will find instructions on how to run a simple query. For current space data, select PS_DWSP_Room from the list of DWSP tables. The suffixes _11232009 and _ 10202101 indicate historical snapshot data from the fall semesters of 2009, 2010, and 2011. For further assistance downloading data from the Data Warehouse, please contact the help desk at 612-301-4357.

Editing Space Data

  • Q6. I accidentally “Submitted for Approval” or changed my mind about the edit to the room, is there a way to stop the “Submit for Approval” process?
    Yes. Locate the record in the “Waiting for Others to Approve” section of your “My Locations” page and press the “Recall” button. It will recall the request for approval, stop the process, and notify everyone in the approval process with an email stating it was “Rejected.”
  • Q7: I want to make a change to a room that is shared between multiple departments and DSC’s (Departmental Space Coordinators). Will the other DSC’s be notified of the change?
    Yes. Before submitting a room edit that affects other departments, discuss the proposed change to confirm their agreement before entering the change.
  • Q8: I am the DSC for a room but U-Space does not allow me to update the room data or reads “No DSC identified”?
    If the Department ID never had square footage assigned to it before, the U-Space system will not recognize you as the DSC for that unit. Send an email to the Office of Space Management at requesting we update the Dept ID with you as the designated DSC.
  • Q9: I have entered and saved an occupant name to the room. Do I need to “Submit for Approval”?
    No. DO NOT “Submit for Approval” when adding, changing, or deleting an occupant name. Occupant Information is entered directly into the system without going through the approval process.
  • Q10: I entered an occupant’s name, clicked on the magnifying glass, and nothing shows in the listing?
    Go back to the edit room occupant screen, and enter the last name only, then click on the magnifying glass and search for the person’s name in the listing. If that doesn’t work, go back to the edit room occupant screen. Enter the X500 Internet ID for that person. If that doesn’t work, search for the person’s name in the University People Search Directory to see if they are in the University system. If not, enter one of the following “generic” occupant types. Type one of the following: Term (Non Tenure Track) Faculty, Undergraduate Student, Graduate Assistant, Non-Employee, Community Partner or Vacant (see User guide for definitions) and click on the magnifying glass, and the system will send you to the word in the names listing. Scroll down the list until you find the word, and click on the word, and then save it as the Occupant Name.
  • Q11: A staff person has left and the replacement person is unknown, what should I put in the occupant name data field?
    Enter the word “Vacant” in the room occupant field, click on the magnifying glass, and the word “Vacant or Vacant 2, 3, 4 and 5” will come up in the name listing. Click on the word “Vacant” as if it were the occupant’s name and save.
  • Q12: What rooms should have capacity populated?
    The data field titled "Capacity" provides us with the ability to maintain the room seating capacity. It is found at the same action field as occupant names and notes. The "seating capacity" should be added to offices, classrooms, class laboratories, computer study laboratories, study rooms, meeting (seminar) rooms, assembly (auditoriums) areas, athletic spectator seating, and conference rooms. Capacity does not require approval by the Authorizing Space Coordinator (ASC) or the Office of Space Management (OSM).

Viewing Space

  • Q13: Can we see the space in the building that is not assigned to our Department ID, such as public concourse, lobby, public restrooms, and other departments?
    Yes, use the “Search Locations Screen” found at the top of your my locations page.

Relocating Space

  • Q14: What do I do if my unit has moved out of a space and no longer wish to use the space?
    If you have relinquished and vacated space please notify us at

Leased Space

  • Q15: What do I do when space is leased by my unit?
    If you have moved or changed your leased space assignments please notify us at
  • Q16: How do I code the space that is being used by a Non University Tenant (NUT)?
    The Department Identification code should be NUT (Non University Tenant) with the Function Code 83 (Outside Agency). Activities that are controlled and operated by outside agencies but are housed or otherwise supported by the University include space that is leased from the University by Non-University entities. All use codes will apply EXCEPT: 040, 050, 060, 070, 110, 115, 310, 520, 523, and 525.

ISO or Department’s that have Charge Back Fees

  • Q17: How do I code space that charges for services and/or is a self-supporting operation?
    Add function code 81 (Internal Service Organization). Activities representing operations that sell goods and services primarily to University departments and recover indirect costs (at least equipment depreciation) through fees charged. Service organizations must have their rates reviewed by accounting services and approved by the Budget Office. Refer to University Policy 3.2.1, selling goods and services to university departments. Includes recharge centers serving academic programs and departments. Biomedical Graphics, Fleet Services. Printing and Graphics, Physics lab, Networking and Telecommunication Services, and Research Animal Resources offices and animal quarters support/service rooms. Include: research equipment charge-back facilities, UMD Plant Services, University Stores, and Facilities Management shops operating on a charge-back basis.

Floor Plans

  • Q18: I noticed the floor plan is not correct in Visual Map, or does not match the room data, what should I do?
    Call 5-1830 or send an email to the Office of Space Management at Attach a copy of drawing and where the changes are located.
  • Q19: What should I do for space that is in my inventory that is unidentified due to remodel or if I need to have cubicles added to a floor plan?
    For space that is not identified in your inventory due to a remodel, room reconfiguration, or cubicle stations that need to be added to a floor plan, please contact Tina Kivi, AutoCAD Drawings Manager at or for assistance.
  • Q20: How do I create a PDF from a floor plan from Visual Map?
    You Save the floor plan to the PDF writer as a printer.

Frequency of Updating Space

  • Q21: How often should space room data be updated in U-Space?
    Make changes in “real time” or at the very least, QUARTERLY.

Research Space Coding

  • Q22: What is the definition of a Principal Investigator (PI)?
    The PI is the person who directly receives the research grant from an outside agency and signs the agreement. They are responsible for the research and research outcome. They often carry their research funds from one institution to another. They are responsible to provide all financial support. Sometimes funding for organized research is carried over as gap funding between grants that may change to departmental research, (function code 22), other sponsored research (function code 31), and research clinical trials (function code 34).
  • Q23: How do you add the Principal Investigator (PI) in U-Space?
    Go to your "My Locations" page in U-Space and scroll down to the "Allocations" section. You will notice under the column labeled "PI" rooms (with a research function code) will have either a red exclamation point (information to be entered) or a green check mark (information completed). If you have more than one PI in a room, indicate the use of each PI by a percentage adding up to 100%. Each new PI should be entered on a new line. If you don't know the other PI name(s), enter "PI UNKNOWN" and click on the magnifying glass and save it as if it were a name. Add each PI's percentage until it equals 100%. If you are an Academic Health Sciences department, and have more than 5 PIs sharing a space (research core) you can assign the space to either 100% PI_SHARED or PI_DEPT. Once you have saved the PI name(s) the update goes directly into the U-Space system. This entry does not require the approval process. Step by step instructions can be found in the U-Space User Guide (March 2011 version) pages 27 through 32.
  • Q24: Which spaces are subject to audit by the federal government?
    When reviewing research space, remember that the data is used by the Office of Sponsored Projects Administration (SPA) for negotiating the Indirect Cost Recovery rate with the federal government. Any space coded with a function code 21 Organized Research is subject to audit by the federal government. If a room is not used 100% for organized research, the room should be prorated by the percentage used equaling up to 100%. Faculty offices may be prorated between a variety of applicable function codes such as Instruction (function code 11), Departmental Research (function code 22) Organized Research (function code 21) and Community Service (function code 33) or, if the faculty member files effort certification reports, it is acceptable to default to a function code of 21 for the entire space. The definitions of the function and use codes can be found in the Function and Use code documentation.
  • Q25: How should research space be coded?
    Research space is identified by the function codes such as Organized Research (function code 21), Departmental Research (function code 22), Other Sponsored Research (function 31), and Research Clinical Trials (human subjects) (function code 34) and NOT SOLELY BY USE CODES such as (use code 250) research laboratory and (use code 255) research laboratory service.
  • Q26: What is the definition of research laboratory and research laboratory service?
    Use codes 250 research laboratory is used primarily for laboratory experimentation, research or training in research methods, or professional research and observation, or structured creative activity within a specific program. It includes research space where computers are used for conducting research. Use code 255 research laboratory service is a room serving a research laboratory.
  • Q27: How should non-traditional research space be coded?
    Sponsored Project Administration’s (SPA) primary method for identifying research spaces for analysis is the function code, Animal quarters (use codes 570 and 575), field buildings (use code 560) and greenhouses (use codes 580 and 585) should be identified according to the appropriate use. It is not recommended that these uses be categorized as use code 250 research labs or 255 research lab service spaces. These use codes will not be missed in an audit of research space so long as the appropriate research function code is recorded.
  • Q28: How should spaces within a research facility be coded?
    When a facility is entirely research with or without restricted access, the main lobby, central corridors, stairwells, elevators, mechanical closets, and loading docks must be coded as Building Services (use code BDA, CBDA, DBDA, MBDA, RBDA and for all ROC's BDA plus site number) to reflect the activity that is occurring within the space. The federal Division of Cost Allocation (DCA) would not approve of coding these spaces to use code 255 research laboratory services.

Definition of Square Footage Measurements

  • Q29: What is the definition of GSF, ASF, Non ASF and SSF?
    According to the National Center for Education Statistics, Institute of Education Sciences “Postsecondary Education Facilities Inventory and Classification Manual (FICM) 2006 Edition” U.S. Department of Education Sciences, NCES 2006-160. GSF = Gross Square Feet: The sum of all areas on all floors of a building included within the outside faces of its exterior walls, including all vertical penetration areas, for circulation and shaft areas that connect one floor to another. ASF = Assignable Square Feet: The sum of all areas on all floors of a building assigned to, or available for assignment to, an occupant or specific use. (Classrooms, labs, offices, study facilities, special use, general use, support, health care, residential, and unclassified – that are used to accomplish the institution’s mission) Non ASF = Non Assignable Square Feet: The sum of all areas on all floors of a building not available for assignment to an occupant or for a specific use, but necessary for the general operation of a building. (Building services, circulation, and mechanical that are used to support the building’s general operation) SSF = Structural Square Feet: The sum of all areas on all floors of a building that cannot be occupied or put to use because of structural building features. (Exterior walls, fire walls, permanent partitions, unusable areas in attics or basements, or comparable portions of a building with ceiling height restrictions. Gross Area minus Assignable and Non Assignable Area = Structural Area

Miscellaneous Questions

  • Q30: Any other questions?
    Please contact the U-Space Team at and we will be happy to assist you.