Campus Projects Near End

Campus Projects Near End

By Stephen Gawlik
Staff Writer

Upper Campus residence hall improvements, renovations to the Flynn Recreation Complex and continuing work on the Higgins Hall project head the list of summer construction projects underway across campus.

One major project, the construction of a new three-story building on Hammond Street, was recently completed and the building is now used for office space.

Most of the other projects that began earlier this summer will be completed before students return in September, said Associate Vice President for Facilities Management Thomas Devine.

On the Upper Campus, the University is in the midst of a multi-phase project to completely renovate the freshman residence halls. The buildings are being fitted with new sprinkler systems, fire alarms and smoke detectors. All rooms will be carpeted and have redesigned closet space, Devine said.

Design work is proceeding on a structure that will join Gonzaga Hall to Fitzpatrick Hall. The new area will provide needed common space for resident meetings and activities and additional student living quarters. This project also includes the conversion of attic space to student rooms in those dormitories and Williams, Welch and Roncalli halls.

The Flynn Recreation Complex renovation is on schedule as well, said Devine. The facility, which has been closed since May, is expected to re-open for use in September and will feature a new mezzanine, ventilation, flooring, lighting and ceilings. Last summer's replacement of the roof and this year's interior improvements are expected to extend the facility's life by 10 years.

Mike Vella (left) and John Richmond of Bennett Electric examine plans for renovation of the Flynn Recreation Complex. (Photo by Lee Pellegrini)

Devine said the Higgins Hall project also is adhering to its timetable. The project is in the second of three phases and renovations are currently being done on the north wing of the building. Once work is completed in the autumn of 2001, Higgins will feature two new auditoriums with improved audiovisual technology, an animal facility and additional classrooms and offices.

Other campus building projects include the construction of a new stairway linking Lower and Middle campuses. Devine said the design for the 120-step stairway features landings and benches, making for a more relaxed climb up the hill than the "Higgins Stairs" of old.

Preparations are being made to begin construction of a Lower Campus administration building in the area below O'Neill Library. Currently the project, which is in its final design stages, is awaiting approval by the Boston Redevelopment Authority. Devine said that some of the expected tenants will include academic departments, Human Resources, University Housing, the Boston College Police Department and the Career Center.


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