Despite bangs and barriers, few construction complaints

By
Staff Writer
Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Despite the hubbub, students and staff said renovations to the Metcalf Chemistry and Research Laboratory and construction on the Perry and Marty Granoff Center for the Creative Arts have not significantly affected quality of life on campus.

The Metcalf renovations are scheduled to conclude by fall 2011, according to the Building Brown website. The creative arts center will be complete by next semester, wrote Marisa Quinn, vice president for public affairs and University relations, in an e-mail to The Herald.

Chad McAuliffe ’14 lives in Littlefield Hall, near the Metcalf renovations. Though he said the renovations can be “kind of annoying,” he said he has not found them especially inconvenient.

“It would be one thing if there was, you know, a lot of noise or loud machinery, but it’s not really bothersome,” McAuliffe said.

The only annoyance he said he has faced has been the need to walk around the barriers for the construction, although he said it is “not a big deal.” In terms of noise, he has not had any problems.

“I don’t even know what hours they work,” McAuliffe said. “I can see how it could be annoying because they do have big machinery, and I guess they must have to use it, but it has never bothered me before, and I’ve never heard anyone else in Littlefield complain about it.”

The Metcalf renovations are taking place across the street from the Sciences Library, but according to Jiya Xia GS, noise is not an issue there either.

“I seldom hear from outside,” said Xia, who studies frequently in the SciLi.

The creative arts center sits directly behind the University bookstore. Judi Kelley, bookstore supervisor for customer service, cashiering and loss prevention, said that though she feels the occasional vibration in the store and notices redirected traffic due to construction, the impact on her office experience has been minimal.

The construction workers have “handled everything quietly and professionally,” Kelley said. “We’ve had no problems.”

Kelley said she has previously worked in areas with loud or distracting construction sites, but her experience at the bookstore has been positive. Construction workers even help her find her newspaper in the morning, she said.

“They’re awesome,” Kelley said. “It hasn’t been an inconvenience for us or anything.”

Quinn also wrote that the University has worked with neighborhood associations to mitigate the impacts that construction projects might have. Efforts have included creating construction vehicle traffic patterns that avoid residential areas, enforcing construction hours of operation and requiring off-street parking for construction workers.

The history department building is also located near the creative arts construction site. The construction there, although inconvenient, is not a huge issue, Professor of History Karl Jacoby wrote in an e-mail to The Herald.

“It is moderately annoying from time to time, but such is the price of progress,” Jacoby wrote.