'Classroom Blitz' cleans up, refurbishes
classrooms, halls in 6 buildings
Buchholz, Chronicle staff
Bob Morton of Capital Carpet and Flooring
Specialists in Woburn applies finishing touches to new carpeting
in the Isenberg School of Management. (Stan Sherer photo)
n contrast with the summer's highly visible construction
boom that tore up sidewalks, filled the air with the beeping of
trucks in reverse, and saw walls and framing rise into the campus
skyline, a quiet revolution took place in six classroom buildings
over the winter break.
Between the end
of finals and Jan. 26, the "Classroom Blitz" saw Engineering
and Flint labs, Chenoweth and French halls, New Africa House and
the School of Management receive facelifts: new, larger seats for
students; new teaching stations, light switches and electrical outlet
plates; fresh paint on ceilings, walls and doors and polish on tile
floors; deep cleaning; and new blinds, chalkboards, flooring, lighting
and projector screens, where needed. The Blitz combined the efforts
of Physical Plant's Building Maintenance, Custodial Services, and
Grounds Management departments, as well as that of outside contractors,
who were brought in because of the tight schedule.
$450,000 later, 42 classrooms
and the entry- and hallways in the six buildings were made over.
Three of the rooms got new floors, while others received patching
in worn areas. And 1,750 new seats were installed.
"If somebody saw
these rooms before we started and now, they wouldn't believe it,"
said Howard Cleveland, central shops manager in Physical Plant,
who helped to pull the project together. "Of course the south
end of the School of Management is new. Now if you walk into the
north end of the SOM, you can barely tell the difference between
"It's going to
make a huge difference," said Joyce Hatch, interim vice chancellor
for Administration and Finance, adding that the difference between
"before" and "after" in the spaces is dramatic.
Hatch noted that the blitz does not replace the annual effort by
the Alterations Department, which involves more extensive renovation
of classroom space in which rooms are gutted and rebuilt, and is
being planned for the summer.
The project was made
possible by savings from the campus's utility budget and other balances
from the end of last year, Hatch said.
Both Cleveland and Pat
Daly, interim director of Physical Plant, had high praise for the
staff involved in the blitz.
Daly said staff in Custodial
Services were so enthusiastic about the project, they got ahead
a help," Cleveland said. "There wasn't one human hurdle."
Because funding for the blitz wasn't secured until early November,
the planning schedule was tight Cleveland said.
to be very closely spaced in order to be on-line when the students
got back again," he said. "It was an awful lot of work
in just over a month. Plus we had the holidays in there.
maintenance foreman] Denny Rivard came back as an 03 to help. He
and [elevator repairman] Kevin Ryan project managed this job once
it was in the field. Everybody put their best foot forward."