East campus is about to get much busier, with the Global Scholars Hall lawsuit and the construction of the new 500-bed residence hall.
On May 27, the Emerald reported that the University of Oregon filed a $8.5 million in damage lawsuit against the designers and contractors due to the deflection on the construction of GSH.
Vice President for Student Life Robin Holmes wrote an email to inform the hall’s residents that the building is in safe and healthy conditions for students.
Resident Nathan Potter said he has seen the defected work throughout the building way before long the UO filed the lawsuit. He described that the door of one of the study rooms on his floor was “sometimes stuck because of the crooked floor.”
When he and other residents received Holmes’ email, they were not surprised.
Potter said the building defects have not been impact on his personal day-to-day, but he said it’s unsure in the long run.
“It’s scary to live in a building with shaky foundation,” Potter said. “What if there was earthquakes? I don’t know how safe it would be.”
UO Housing Marketing and Communication Leah Andrews said although the building do not create health and safety concern, the university filed the lawsuit due to the impaired aesthetic value and functionality of the building.
Andrews also said that over time the defects will increase operational difficulties and maintenance costs.
Across the street from GSH, another residence hall is about to break ground this July and estimated to finish in Fall 2017. The building will bring 500 new beds to UO Housing, but it will take away most of the parking spots behind GSH.
UO Parking and Transportation director Gwen Bolden said the GSH parking spaces mostly served students with vehicles. The losing parking spaces will also cause difficulties for students to find a parking spaces. The new residence hall construction will also impact the Vivian Olum Child Development Center next door with construction noises and by missing parking spaces for parents and faculty.
“Parking spaces have always been a problem,” Olum Child Development Center director Amy Ripley said. “I hope they will replace parking spots in proximity. I’d worry if my staff get off work when it’s dark out and have to walk across campus to their cars.”
Bolden said plans have been made to compromise the loss with 180 parking spots, but there isn’t any specifics of when and where. She also said it’s possible that parking spaces will be places further away from the heart of campus as UO campus grows.
The new residence hall is included in UO Housing’s 20-year plan to remodel and renovate older residence halls on campus. When it is finished, every other year UO will tackle one of the older residence halls such as Bean hall, Hamilton and Walton.