Repairs to Utility Tunnel begin May 1
For more than 40 years, a utility tunnel from the Heating & Chilling Plant east of Wood Road has provided the campus with warm air in the winter, cool air in the summer, and hot water year-round. May 1, repairs begin on 2,500 feet of the tunnel.
Facilities Management Director Don Kolbe said there are many aspects to this major repair and construction project.
"Some of the tunnel structure is damaged and that will be repaired; the tunnel exterior will be waterproofed, and drain tile will be installed," Kolbe said. "There will also be some asbestos abatement and replacing portions of the steam and chilled-water piping.
"We understand that this project will cause inconvenience. However, the work needs to be done to ensure proper, ongoing operation of heating and chilling functions."
During the first phase of the project, May 1 through May 17, construction and repair will be limited to the area between the Heating & Chilling Plant and the roundabout on Wood Road. No road closures will be required during this first phase.
Construction and repair from the roundabout west toward Molinaro Hall begins May 19 and is scheduled for completion in mid-August. During that time, some roadways will be closed:
- The roundabout;
- Portions of Wood Road north and south of the roundabout;
- University Drive from the east entrance to parking Lot A south and west to the parking Lot C; and
- Parkside Boulevard from the roundabout to the Student Center circle.
Similar road closures occurred during roundabout construction in the summer of 2009, so this traffic pattern will be familiar to many.Work on the tunnel interior is planned for the fall and spring semesters and will not affect campus events or heating and chilling functions.