Apartment 1 to stay up, construction continues around campus

While the Metzger Apartments project is the most noticeable of on-campus construction problems, the New Library Project has also fallen behind schedule.

Despite rumors, Apartment 1, the first apartment scheduled for completion, will not be torn down. While water damage has delayed the project, the office of Campus Planning and Construction is working with the contractor to develop a workable plan outlining how and when the project will be completed.

“Moving in is important to us,” Brian Murray, director of Campus Planning and Construction, said. “Getting 600 beds in the program is vital, but not nearly as important as getting it right.”

Though at least two of the three apartment buildings were anticipated to open and house students starting last fall, water damage, most concentrated in Apartment 1, stopped progress.

Murray said that while the first building has the most damage, the entire building will not be torn down. The structure is a series of prefab boxes and only some of these boxes were damaged excessively.

“The contractor did come back and say we’re thinking about taking out some of these boxes,” Murray said. “That’s strictly because financially it’s probably faster and easier.”

“Everyone’s first concern is that these buildings are safe,” Pat Coleman-Boatwright, director of College and Community Relations, said. “We know that people aren’t moving in next week. We know that deadline is long past, that ship has sailed. Now it’s just a matter of figuring out how to get it done in such a way that it’s done well and the buildings are up to our expectations in quality.”

The office of Campus Planning and Construction is waiting for the contractor to give it a plan outlining what it intends to do.

Similarly, the contractor is waiting for such a plan to be approved before making any major progress on the structures.

The new library has also fallen behind schedule. “The biggest problem is that the cement outside of the building is not done,” Murray said.

“I’ve just gotten verification that they’re done. Now it’s just a matter of getting them here.”

To remedy the situation, partitions have been put up, allowing heat to be run in the building and windows to be put in.

Crews are working 24 hours a day and on weekends and will continue to do so until the project is back on schedule, Murray said.

Murray said he expects the building to be ready for start-up testing in June.

A summer move is planned, and the new building will be open for students to use when they return for the fall semester.