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PC Katie Hardy

Construction near The Commons

Yet another construction project has broken ground on campus. A large portion of The Commons is being re-roofed. “The roof of The Commons has become deteriorated, resulting in water intrusion and threatening the use of some portions,” said Rusty Postlewate, director of facilities.

The renovations that this project will eventually put in place will restore several sections of the roof, making it not only functional, but secure in the long term. The project is being funded by The Commons, and the need for it has been discussed and planned for several years. The project is still in its early stages: the contractor is mobilizing equipment and material for the roofing work is being prepared. It is known as the “access point,” and it allows workers and equipment to get from the street into the project area.

Many students are wondering how long this new project will take. Between October 26 and November 6, the contractor will be constructing the aforementioned access road, which impacts several pedestrian pathways across campus, as many of us have already noticed.

From November 6 through late January, the re-roofing will take place, and some of the sidewalks in the central lawn area between The Commons and the library will be closed. The finished project will be a white, energy-efficient polymer membrane. It will not be visible to the campus community, but, “It is critical in order to allow the functions within the building to continue,” said Postlewate.

PC Patrick Alejandro
(Patrick Alejandro for TRW)

Having this construction project appear overnight surprised much of the UMBC community. Asma Azam, a freshman, said, “It isn’t an inconvenience but there was no warning, so it kind of threw me off guard when I saw all the workers and trucks. However, I understand the necessity for it. I know some students are frustrated with the constant construction but without these renovations, we won’t have a functioning university.”

Morgan Carter, a freshman, agreed with Azam, in that the project doesn’t pose a major inconvenience, stating, “If it’s not interfering with anything I’m doing, it’s fine. We don’t really care. There are plenty of other paths we can take. I guess if it blocks one of the doors, then that would be a problem, but it doesn’t.”

If students, faculty or staff want more information about this project and many others, Facilities Management will be hosting an open forum on Wednesday, Nov. 11 at noon in the Performing Arts and Humanities Building lecture hall 132.

The forum will provide details about all upcoming campus construction projects and offer the opportunity for us to answer any specific questions you may have about the projects. The projects to be discussed will affect the entire campus population, and include the Fine Arts building renovation, apartment renovations, the new Event Center and the new Interdisciplinary Life Sciences building.