Several major construction projects, which are designed to repair campus infrastructure, construct new buildings and make aesthetic improvements, are continuing apace this semester.
One such major project is an elevated plaza that is being erected in the courtyard of the Glenn G. Bartle Library.
When complete, the library deck will be a 750-square-foot glass-enclosed addition that will connect to Jazzman’s Café and will provide seating space for an additional 45 people, according to Karen Fennie, spokeswoman for Physical Facilities. She said the deck will be completed by January, weather permitting.
Jazzman’s Café will remain open throughout the construction.
Emily Schumacher, a sophomore in the Decker School of Nursing, said she is excited about the new addition.
“Having a glass-enclosed patio sounds really cool,” Schumacher said. “I think that it is great that more seating is being added. I love sitting at the café and in the booths, but they are always so crowded. Hopefully with extra seating it won’t be so hard to find a spot.”
The central campus quad project, which will turn the area between the Library Tower, Science I and the Fine Arts Building into a green central gathering space on campus, is progressing ahead of schedule, according to Fennie.
“The contractor has completed phases 1 and 2 and will be shutting down for the winter at the end of this month,” Fennie said. “The final phase will take place in the spring, March or April start up, depending on weather.”
She also said that a new fountain has been constructed and will be installed by summer 2012.
Another planned construction project will renovate the north side of the Old University Union. These renovations will happen in two projects that will overlap.
The first project includes renovating the north portion, “non-food services areas” of the Old Union. This area is where Campus Activities and the Kosher Kitchen used to be, along with areas above and below. The project is scheduled to begin in fall 2012 and to be completed by spring 2014.
“It will involve removing asbestos throughout, replacing the roof, providing new heating, air conditioning and ventilation systems, new lighting, power distribution, ceilings, finishes and fire alarm systems,” Fennie said.
The second project will renovate the food service area, the Susquehanna Room and the Food Court. The plan for the project is to add 5,500 square feet to the space. Several design options are currently being considered. The project is anticipated to begin summer 2012 and to be completed by fall 2013.
“The idea is to merge these two areas and create an open, marketplace-type space with a variety of food options,” Fennie said.
Alecia Krampel, a junior majoring in financial economics, said she is glad that renovations like the Old Union are underway, but she wishes that it would not happen all at once.
“I think it’s good that the school is trying to better itself, but it is a little upsetting that I am surrounded by so much construction all at once that I probably won’t even be able to enjoy during my time here,” Krampel said.