College Renovation Projects Continue


Source: Morgan Golliver

Morgan Golliver, News Editor

At the end of last semester, Utica College began making renovations to various areas on campus.

The changes began around finals week and ended before classes started in January, many students and staff returned to campus astonished by the new look while others did not notice.

Laura Lewin, the studio support specialist at UC, has an office in the Faculty Center basement of Hubbard Hall where she witnessed some of the renovations being made during her part-time work hours.

“I didn’t know ahead of time that anything was happening, but then I started seeing people measuring the floor tiles and I started asking questions,” Lewin said.

When coming back to start her new full-time position, Lewin noticed the new changes outside her office as well as changes being made in her office — her reaction was positive.

“I think it’s a nice change and brings a crisp look to the area,” Lewin said. “I also think it makes the area look better especially when tours come through.”

Lewin also pointed out that she noticed the second floor of the Faculty Center carpeting changed, which she felt was needed.

“I think the second floor definitely looks better than it did before as it looked torn last semester,” Lewin said.

Despite the appeal, many have also wondered why such renovations needed to be done.

Dan Bollana, the executive director of facilities planning and operations, said the work was necessary because of safety concerns and some repairs required life-cycle replacements.

“Finishes have aged and need updating,” Bollana said. “There were also some safety concerns where items like carpet were buckling or loose, needing material.”

Bollana listed many of the changes made over the break, such as painting walls, re-carpeting all three floors of the Faculty Center hallways, carpeting various rooms, and preventative maintenance work on heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment.

Carpeting was the bulk of the work, where Bollana said the college saved money by using their own resources.

“We are using carpet squares because our craftsmen can install them, thus saving labor costs of having an outside contractor do the work,” Bollana said. “Other items we repaired or replaced were caused by items getting broken or damaged.”

Junior Mark Mitchell has taken multiple courses located in Faculty Center over the past two semesters where, at first, he did not notice any work being done.

“I didn’t know beforehand that they were doing any work, but it started becoming noticeable after a while,” Mitchell said. “I started noticing wet paint signs after class, which were helpful, so that way no one touched or leaned up against painted areas.”

When Mitchell began noticing the renovations after returning to campus, he thought the work was impressive.

“I didn’t notice the changes right away, but by standing around long enough, I could tell there was new carpeting,” Mitchell said. “I think the work looks well done, it doesn’t look rushed or anything, and I think the new colors fit with our school colors.”

Senior Calico Yaworski was caught off guard when she saw the new changes, especially the carpeting.

“I remember seeing people painting the walls last semester when I was going to class, but I was surprised to see new carpeting this semester,” Yaworski said. “Honestly, the pattern on the carpet was a bit much to my eyes at first because it kind of made me dizzy.  It’ll take some getting used to, but it looks nice.”

There is still some work to be done around campus, but Bollana said that it will not take place when students are in classes.

“It’s difficult to perform work when classes are in session, so at that time it’s predominantly repair and maintenance work and service calls,” Bollana said. “We do have a small project to modify an office configuration in White Hall, second floor. We will continue painting after hours in Hubbard Hall.”