ON CAMPUS

Syracuse University’s summer construction projects include bathroom renovations and classroom upgrades

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In addition to bathroom and classroom renovations, more greenery will be added on the Syracuse University campus.

UPDATED: Aug. 6, 2017 at 10:24 p.m.

Construction continues on the Syracuse University campus this summer as the university’s Campus Facilities Administration and Services works to renovate residence halls and academic buildings before students return for the fall semester.

Bathroom renovations in several residence halls and academic buildings, upgrades to classrooms in the Hall of Languages and a roof replacement at the Center for Science and Technology are scheduled for this summer. Additionally, the university plans to plant trees and shrubs this summer.

“The campus is continually looking at how we can get better every day at serving the Syracuse community,” said Pete Sala, vice president and chief facilities officer.

The big picture

SU’s summer construction projects require hundreds of construction workers. Sala said the school prides itself on working with local labor in the central New York region to accomplish these tasks.

“I think it’s a fantastic thing for the economy in Syracuse,” he said.

Sala said CFAS must adhere to its allocated capital project budget for a given year. The department schedules projects five years in advance, which helps the staff with each year’s construction cycle, he explained. There are some projects that are designated as immediate needs and the schedule is adjusted.

“We always make sure the academic mission of the university is respected,” Sala said, “and we make sure the construction will never take away from that.”

Some projects will run into the fall semester, but they are carefully selected and arranged to have minimal impact on students. These include Hendricks Chapel step improvements, Crouse College masonry restoration, accessible restrooms at the Archbold Theatre and Huntington Hall and mechanical work at Carnegie Library.

Sala said some of these projects will occur during off hours and will not disrupt students, classes or scheduled events at these locations.

Residence hall makeover

Bill Longcore Jr., associate director of the Office of Residence Life, said the university intends to eventually renovate all residence hall bathrooms.

Larger, multi-person bathrooms will be converted to “pod” style, single-use bathrooms that are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. This summer, that work will be done in Day Hall and in the shorter wing of DellPlain Hall.

Bathrooms in the long wing of DellPlain were upgraded in summer 2016.

Residence hall renovations — including first and second floor upgrades in Haven Hall — are on track to be finished before resident assistants return to campus on Aug. 10, Longcore Jr. said.

Academic and campus building improvement

The transformation of bathrooms to comply with the ADA continues in academic and other campus buildings like Schine Student Center and Archbold Theatre. Sala said there are no current plans for further renovations at the student center.

Renovations to the Hall of Languages, the first building built on campus in 1873, will be one of the trickier projects for CFAS. The project will entail renovations of six classrooms this summer and include additional work next summer.

“I absolutely will preserve the historic nature of the building,” Sala said.

When updating buildings on Old Row — a group of SU’s 15 original buildings — the construction team must get approval from the Syracuse Landmark Preservation Board. SU also plans to work with an architect to preserve some of the windows and replace other windows at the Hall of Languages.

Although the building has an old look on the outside, it’s important to upgrade the technology on the inside, Sala said.

The roof at the Center for Science and Technology will also be replaced this summer.

Making Syracuse greener

Beautification of the campus is also a university priority this summer. The university’s Physical Plant — the group responsible for operations and maintenance of all campus grounds — will be planting up to 135 trees and 40 to 50 shrubs, Sala said.

The university maintains a nursery on South Campus, which allows for trees and shrubs to grow before being brought to main campus, saving the university money.

With the help of professors and faculty that work with the Climate Change Garden, Sala said the Physical Plant learned which plants are best suited for the Syracuse environment.

Input from students and faculty pointed out areas where more greenery is needed, including the space between Huntington Beard Crouse Hall and the Hall of Languages, and the space between HBC and Hinds Hall, where the iSchool is housed, Sala said.

In addition to greenery, additional furniture will be installed on the University Place promenade.

The first part of a two-year project to renew sewers and water mains along Waverly Avenue has begun. Access to The Cage in Newhouse will remain available via the Waverly entrance but the Waverly Parking Lot is closed. Euclid Avenue, a popular street for off-campus student housing, will be restriped as part of this project.

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