Throughout the fiscal year, the maintenance and repair department oversees nearly 80 renovations annually. Renovations include huge projects like the Dakota Dome to minor fixes, like A/C unit repairs.
The Colton Recital Hall and the Center of Fine Arts Theatre is one of the major projects the maintenance department will undergo beginning in May 2021.
The renovations are set to cost $2.1 million and the plans will bring new seating, lighting and fresh coats of paint.
While most students hear about the bigger projects around campus, maintenance and repair manage smaller renovations as well.
The department of facilities management works on 60-80 smaller renovation projects every year. The team of six workers has a tentative ten-year plan for upcoming renovations.
Based on urgency and cost, approved renovations typically take three to four years to get to.
“All projects come into us and then Planning and Construction meet with whoever requested the project, like a department chair,” said Brian Limoges, Assistant Vice President of Facilities Management. “From there, we have to understand the project and estimate the cost.”
Projects can be delayed because maintenance and repair teams prioritize emergencies, such as broken boilers, roofs, faulty chillers and A/C units going out. These emergencies are addressed immediately, Limoges said.
Following emergencies, maintenance and repair moves to projects focused on energy efficiency, and then departmental requests.
“Projects range from millions of dollar renovations like the Dakota Dome or adding a new waterfall to East Hall,” Adam Rosheim VP of Finance and Administration said.
Other smaller projects completed over the year include adding new LED lights in Burgess and Norton halls and fixing department requests for new flooring, as well as installing key card readers in Beacom, Neuharth, Belbas, I.D. Weeks, Old Main, Native American Center and Akeley Lawrence.
“Upcoming renovations in upcoming years include a partial renovation of the law school courtroom, adding a new chiller in I.D. Weeks library and Dakota Hall and beginning renovations on North complex, which will include rooms and flooring,” Limoges said.
Limoges said there’s also a renovation plan to completely redo the Native American Center’s exterior –including HVAC units, new paint and windows — to change the appearance to the like of other campus buildings rather than a residential home.
Every summer the maintenance and repair team also fixes three roofs around campus. This year they fixed Slagle, Patterson and the Cook House’s. Next year’s roof updates will be on Akley-Lawerence, North Complex and Burgess-Norton.
“When a plan is proposed, it has to be approved by the state legislature and is then heard by the Board of Regents. We write a proposal with a short justification and request aid from the state,” Rosheim said.
Currently waiting for approval is a plan to tear down the ground shop by north complex, as well as Julian Hall. If Julian Hall is torn down, the university plans to build a new Health Sciences building in the Lee Medical Building parking lot. Limoges said he hopes the plans will be approved by May 2020.