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Living plans not altered by Ohio State water main break

Andrew Holleran / Photo editor

With the water main break evacuation behind them and all Ohio State students back in their dorms, memories of the experience are still fresh in students’ minds. Despite the inconvenience, some students have said it hasn’t influenced their decision to live on campus next year.
About 2,000 students were evacuated from their rooms in Park-Stradley Hall and Baker Halls East and West Sept. 16. Baker residents were allowed to return to their rooms the next day at 7 a.m. Of the evacuated students, only 150 to 200 students spent the first night in the RPAC. Others stayed with friends and family.
But the 1,200 Park-Stradley residents weren’t allowed to return for three nights, save a quick trip to their dorms to grab the essentials on Sept. 17, and even when they did return on Sept. 19, the building was still without drinkable water until Sept. 21.
Some students said they realized the water main break was unavoidable and aren’t letting it affect their choice about where to live next year.
“Although I already planned to live off campus next year, (the water main break) wouldn’t have affected my decision even if I was undecided,” said Shelby Kammer, a first-year in human development and family science. “I know that it wasn’t on purpose or planned, so I was able to deal with it and was able to get over the frustration.”
Anthony Calanni, a first-year in biology, said it didn’t play any role in his decision, but he could understand why it might influence other students.
“Students just don’t want to have to deal with things like that when living on campus,” Calanni said.
But many students said they plan to move off campus for their second year anyway.
“I think sophomores in general already don’t want to live on campus for a second year,” said Nelleakqua Castlin, a first-year in nursing. “We only do our freshman year because we kind of have to.”
That’s something OSU President E. Gordon Gee has been looking to change. He has been working on an initiative to require all second-year students to live on campus, a plan the university wants to implement by fall 2015.
The university is attempting to compensate students inconvenienced by the water main break. Every resident of Park-Stradley will have $90, or $30 per night, credited to their university account.
Park-Stradley opened Fall Semester after being closed for a year as part of a $171 million South Campus renovation project. The building was occupied for about a month before the water main break.
Student Life spokesman Dave Isaacs said the cause of the water main break is under investigation.

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