Library among projects in need of renovation and repair

Tyler McNeil

Creative Editor

As summer approaches, the Physical Plant plans to upgrade outdated campus infrastructure, including immediate projects such the $50,000 repair of the lower library after the Apr. 11 flooding.

“We’ve got some bigger repairs to make, we’re suffering from some old sins, but at least right now we’ve got an idea of how to move forward,” said Richard Edwards, director of the Physical Plant.

Last Saturday, the Physical Plant repaired piping in the library’s manhole. During repairs, moisture detectors were installed so sewer backup could be detected faster in the future. New carpeting is scheduled for installation this week.

The clay piping split recently, causing the sewer to back up. Objects such as T-shirts and underwear ultimately slowed the system down. “If it’s working properly and It doesn’t have all that crap in it, it will handle most of it. It periodically backs up,” Edwards said about objects clogging the manhole.

According to the Physical Plant, there was a minor amount of sewage, but they still hope to eventually take roof drains out of the the sanitary line in the library. The repairs have not yet been scheduled, but Edwards is currently looking into taking half the drains out and flowing them into a storm system.

The library, built in 1970, was constructed before roof drains were prohibited from running into a sanitary line. The roof drains on top of Marvin still run into a sanitary line, flowing into a sanitary sewer manhole outside of the library that collects water from the library and Brahan Hall.

This summer, the Physical Plant also aims to tackle upgrades in other older buildings across campus. In Lang and Higbee Hall, new ceiling tiles, painting, carpeting and entryways around the buildings will be installed. Edwards, a 1980 Hudson Valley graduate, saw the buildings two years ago when he became director of the Physical Plant and thought, “Wow, they have not changed at all.”

In the Campus Center, panels damaged due to leakage have been recently replaced in several locations, including the south end of the building, the bathrooms, and the ping pong court.

Since the Campus Center and the library have flat roofs, when the snow builds up in certain corners or hidden areas of the roof, as it did this winter, it can leak behind, causing moisture to get down into the decking and into the insulation.

“There’s been a hole with a bowl under it with occasional ceiling leaks for as long as I’ve been here,” said Katie Marcellus, a fine arts major who has attended Hudson Valley since Fall 2013. Marcellus was referring to a hole in the corner of the Campus Center’s Civic Engagement Center.

No work orders had addressed the hole in the Civic Engagement Center until I mentioned the problem to Edwards. “We’re not in the bathrooms, we’re not in all the areas that [students] might be in,” he said.

Many concrete repairs are also planned for the summer.The Physical Plant plans to repair stairways in front of the library, Brahan Hall, and by the clock tower, along with the sidewalk by Guenther.

The Physical Plant contracted with Bob Talham Inc. Blacktop Paving to repair 120 potholes on North Drive and in the C-lot last Thursday. Last Tuesday night, an unidentified person dropped several five-gallon buckets of topsoil in the potholes. The Physical Plant removed the dirt before the repairs from Talham Inc. on Apr. 23.

The Physical Plant also plans to work with the newly established garden club on landscaping ventures across campus. Edwards said, “We want to get the grounds looking better. The last few winters have been really tough on them.”

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