If you’ve set foot on campus recently, chances are you’ve passed at least one area covered in yellow caution tape or surrounded by tools. This is because, over the summer, the campus is receiving several upgrades, many
of which are mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP). Kevin Peck, Associate Director of Maintenance and Operations in the Facilities Services Department, offers insight into what changes are being made to UC Clermont.
Workers have been performing maintenance and upgrading the campus since December 2016, but since the end of the spring semester, the project has been in full swing. Currently, the first phase of the project is underway. New VAV boxes, HVAC systems, sprinklers, windows, doors, and elevators are a few things students can look forward to seeing around campus. The second phase of the project will result in “the construction of a new standalone central utility plant,” states Peck.
Kevin Peck explains the necessity of these renovations: “The campus’ first building, Edith Peter Jones, was built in 1972. This means that the mechanical systems within EP Jones are 45+ years old, and most of these systems have a 15-20 year longevity to begin with.”
There are a variety of people and corporations involved in this project. Leading the management of this project is UC’s Planning, Design, and Construction, in coordination with the contracted engineering firm Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr, and Huber (FTC&H), and construction management firm Churchill-McGee. These three groups, along with the campus facilities team, directs dozens of construction workers, all helping to make the necessary changes to the college. The project is receiving funding from state
biennial endowments, loans from the University of Cincinnati, and building funds from UC Clermont.
The biggest changes for students taking classes over the summer semester, besides some noise coming from the construction zones, is that because the Peter-Jones building shut down, there is no way to access the West
Woods Academic Center internally. Because of that, they have turned a former emergency egress door into a daily access one, and have created a construction path from the main Peter-Jones walkway to that door. Later in
the summer, the library and Krueger Auditorium will be closed for renovations. Peck wants students to know that “the library staff will still be relocating their services to a location within Snyder during the shutdown.”
Overall, these changes will make the campus more sustainable and efficient. The Facilities Services Department and all those helping with the project are grateful for the consideration and patience of the students, faculty, and staff during this time. Kevin Peck explains that although current building conditions are not ideal, “this inconvenience will bring
forth more comfort for those who work, teach, and learn in our various buildings.” This project will likely continue until the first week or two of August. By the time the fall semester arrives, students will be able to appreciate the results of all the hard work that has gone into the recent renovations.