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May 8, 2007

Ida Noyes renovation to fix leaky roof, aging façade

[img id="80235" align="alignleft"] Scaffolding on the north side of Ida Noyes Hall has served as a visual reminder of the extent of the construction work required for the aging building.

This construction is aimed at repairing the damage on the fa_ade and roof of the building, according to Timothy Banks, associate director for Facilities and Events at ORCSA. “These are two chronic problems which have plagued the building for years already,” he said.

Construction work, which began earlier this year and will likely continue until next spring quarter, marks the first major structural reconstruction to the building in its history.

Administrators finally initiated repairs after receiving a growing number of complaints from building patrons about constant leaks and serious safety concerns about the building’s antiquated structure.

The crumbling fa_ade, according to Banks, has reached the point that it serves a potential safety risk. Parts of the building, including Max Palevesky Cinema and other rented spaces, have dealt with minor to severe leaks for quite some time.

“We have been experiencing a lot of problems, and something other than what we had been doing needed to get done,” said Jonathan Abuan, assistant director for Ida Noyes Hall.

“A culmination of complaints from building users about leaks and from past managers about the repairs finally got the ball rolling,” he said.

According to Banks, the University administration has waited until the last possible moment to restore the 100-year old building, having instead resorted to patchwork over the past 15 years instead of lasting fixes.

“The decision to go forward from now comes from years of repairs and years of needing this type of overhaul,” Abuan said.

After continued petitions from building staffers, however, the University secured funding for the restoration project along with other such projects across campus.

“There are a lot of buildings in similar situations to Ida Noyes, and the University finally provided funding for necessary restoration projects,” Banks said.

The project has been separated into two phases for the building’s north and south ends.

The first construction phase, on the building’s north courtyard entrance, is scheduled for completion any time between early July and late September, according to Banks.

Slated to commence in October, construction on the building’s south end is expected to finish by the end of next spring quarter, barring any weather or funding complications.

“[The University] has a timeline for the completion of construction at each of the buildings, and we should be done at latest by next summer,” Banks said.

With construction crews addressing the serious safety concerns, Banks said he and his employees are optimistic about the building’s revitalized form and, more importantly, for all the scaffolding to come down.

“It’s great that they’re finally fixing the building,” he said. “But I can’t wait for this all to be over with.”

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