Delayed construction inconveniences students

Jessie Hellmann

The construction at Housing and Residence Life (Res. Life) has taken longer than expected, making it more difficult for students to check mail and get packages.

Mark Rozewski, finance and administration vice president, said the construction will probably only last for the next week.

“Construction is unbelievably hard to predict, especially renovations,” Rozewski said. “It wasn’t a time sensitive project necessarily. So the fact that it’s two or three weeks behind is not of much consequence.”

This is the first time Res. Life has been remodeled since it was built, he said.

“The rug was worn out, and the furniture was worn out, it just needed to be refreshed,”  he said.

The student lounge in the front part of the building is being completely rearranged to be more hospitable and easy to use, he said.

“So, that you have a place, in addition to the housing community center, to get out of your apartment if you want to, and have access to a computer,” Rozewski said.

“The rest of it was what we call ‘a light refresh’ project, and it costs about $80-90,000 for the entire building,” he said.

He said the construction was needed because the carpet was ripped in spots, and the walls needed to be painted again.

“They wanted to make the package area work better and be more accessible,” he said.

Some students say the construction has inconvenienced them.

Freshman marketing major Justin Meek said he believed the construction was not needed.

“I thought Res. Life looked good and nice inside like it was just remodeled,” Meek said.  “I believe it was not needed. I visited Res. Life almost every other week just to check our mailbox, now I only go there when I am sure I have something waiting for me.”

He said even getting into the building is a challenge.

“You have to walk to the side entrance which is surrounded by mud after all the rain we have had,” he said. “When you give them your ID card, they take it to the mailroom which is way too small.”

He said the assistants look for mail in storage bins, and it’s crazy in the mailroom.

“Everything is just scattered around,” Meek said. “At least that’s what it looks like to me. Honestly, I’m going to just have to put up with the construction because I have no choice.”

Housing and Residence Life Director Laurie Berry said the room where students’ packages are kept will be moved closer to the front desk. 

“I think students will find it’s a better flow, and much more inviting,” Berry said. 

The front lounge will have soft couches and seats, she said.

“There will be more of a living room feeling to it,” Berry said. 

She said there is not a solid construction end-date, but she hopes it will be over in the next two weeks. 

“We know it’s inconvienient,” She said. “We were hoping it would be shorter, but construction is what construction is.” 

She said the main door to the building is open again, so students won’t have to go around to the side of the building anymore.