Renewal project ramps up

"Renovations to Piez Hall and Sheldon Hall are just the beginning of the updates that will be seen across campus. The summer of 2011 will bring new roofs, an updated communication system and various minor renovations on not only academic buildings, but residence halls as well.

""There’s a lot going on," said Tom Simmonds, associate vice president of facilities. "We’re doing critical maintenance to buildings, many have needs and deficiencies."

"Buildings such as Penfield Library and Culkin Hall will have roof replacements. There are also plans to pave West Campus, Laker Hall and the King Hall parking lots.

"Many of the buildings at Oswego State were built in the 70’s and are now over 40 years old and simply need modernizations.

""The functions of many buildings have changed since they were built, we’re doing things like enhancing some of the buildings for deliveries and programs," Simmonds said.

"There will also be renovations to Rice Creek Field Station, Tyler Hall, Romney Field House and Wilber Hall.

"Many residence halls have construction planned as well.

"Simmonds said Residence Life and Housing works closely with student representatives and resident hall staff to identify what the most critical construction needs are in residence halls and that there is a lot of student interaction and input in the process.

"West Campus halls, including Oneida and Cayuga, will have the outside concrete areas redone in addition to their windows the following year.

"Onondaga Hall will have its bathrooms redone as well as be a part of a plan to have communications rehabilitation in all the residence halls.

"One of the Campus Concepts Committee’s (CCC) focuses this summer is to upgrade the communications in Cayuga and Seneca Halls similar to the data and communication systems in Johnson and Riggs.

"The Campus Concept Committee (CCC) is made up of various representatives from the campus including students, faculty and administrators who collaborate on the vision of campus facilities as well as coordinate and identify immediate facility plans.

"Simmonds said the CCC also works on the development of facilities, the processes for design and construction, as well as the future growth of facilities.

"Construction is financed in a variety of ways; on-campus residents pay for construction in the halls they live in.

"Simmonds noted that budget cuts for the fiscal year would not impact campus construction.

""The state views construction differently; they realize they need to invest in old buildings for long-term benefits to the college and state," Simmonds said.

"Simmonds also said the state views campus construction as a tool to spur immediate economic growth because that construction here at Oswego will create about 350 jobs directly and indirectly.

"Other types of budgeting for campus construction are based on the type of construction.

"Simmonds explained in cases of long-term projects that they are bonded and financed from an open bidding environment with contractors.

"Smaller projects may be completed by maintenance staff or completed with short-term contracts with companies.

"Most projects are expected to be completed this summer, however, projects such as the science complex and renovations to Sheldon hall are anticipated to take longer to be completed.

"Penfield Library’s roof replacement may also be expected to run into the beginning of the Fall semester.

"Simmonds said it is hard for the community to have construction without it being an inconvenience to students and faculty and expressed his hope that the community would continue to remain flexible and understanding during campus repairs.