With the school year already underway, the Campus Design and Facilities Dept. is juggling several major renovation projects.
Currently in the works are several campus-wide construction projects, all in varying degrees of completion. The projects include the roadwork on El Colegio Raod, the finalization of the Loma Pelona Multipurpose Center, the grand reopening of the newly remodeled 24-hour room in the Davidson Library and some final touches to the San Clemente Graduate Student Housing complex. All the projects are underway and proceeding as scheduled.
Loma Pelona Center
Located in between San Rafael and Manzanita Village residence halls, the Loma Pelona Center has been in the works since the late 1990s. Its construction was actually part of the original plans for the Manzanita Village.
Designed to serve as a student meeting area, complete with televisions and pool tables, the center is currently in the last phase of construction, according to the director of project management, Daniel Heedy. The center will serve as a central hangout for San Rafael and Manzanita Village residents, Heedy said.
“One third of the building will serve as a recreation area for residents of Manzanita and San Rafael. It will have soft furniture, televisions and a great sound system,” Heedy said.
Funds for the Loma Pelona center stalled in the ’90s due to budget constraints, but according to the Campus Design and Facilities, the $4 million center will likely open by the week of Oct. 13.
At the behest of the 600 students who responded to a spring 2008 survey concerning the Davidson Library’s barren 24-hour room, summer renovations to the all-night study room are now complete. The grand re-opening ceremony will take place as soon as new furniture is installed. The newly renovated room features noise-dampening carpets and lounge furniture.
Prior to the renovations, students had complained of uncomfortable and noisy working conditions. According to University Librarians Brenda Johnson and Kimberly Thompson, the remolding will remedy this problem as well as allow for a more interactive environment for students.
“We hope the new furniture in the 24-hour room will allow students to work together in small groups in a way that they were not able to before,” Johnson said. “We wanted to say to students in a visible way that ‘we are here for you.'”
The newly remolded space will also feature increased wireless Internet capacity and, according to Kimberly Thompson, director of Library Development and Outreach, the 24-hour room may include a cafeteria in the future.
El Colegio Road
At a cost of nearly $7 million dollars, El Colegio Road – Isla Vista’s essential entry point – will remain under construction for much of the school year. The project began on Sept. 22 and will continue to claim various sections of the roadway until the end of March.
According to a press release released by Campus Design and Facilities, the project will ultimately widen El Colegio road to include two additional traffic lanes, a landscaped and raised center median, remodeled sidewalks and improved bike lanes and left turn lanes. Efforts on this project are expected to cause minor but intermittent traffic interruption, as well as occasional road closure throughout the span of its seven-month construction.
San Clemente Graduate Housing Complex
The San Clemente Graduate Housing complex is officially open for the school year and home to roughly 700 graduate students, as well as nearly 200 undergraduates. However, minor landscaping efforts are still pending completion. When finalized, Campus Design and Facilities estimates the San Clemente student housing project will ring in at $153 million.