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Construction means Mason Lab will close, see changes

The computer lab 010 in Mason Hall closed Tuesday because of a renovation issue.

The lab will be closed until mid-week the week of April 4 so electrical boxes can be installed in the first floor above the lab for a new study room, said Keith Bayliss, superintendent for the job with Thomas and Marker Construction.

“Once we’re all done there will be more study tables and computers,” Bayliss said. “That’s the way it goes with construction sometimes; if you want progress you’re going to have to give up your lab for a week.”

The electrical boxes for the new study room are part of a renovation project that will completely transform the first, second and fourth floors of Mason Hall, adding 25 study spaces and making the building environmentally efficient through the use of glass doors and windows that will let in more natural light. A café is scheduled to open on the first floor Autumn Quarter. The project started March 15 and is expected to last 165 days, Bayliss said.

David Greenberger, chair of the Department of Management and Human Resources in the Fisher College of Business and project leader for the college, said he worked with the electrical contractor to have the renovations done at the beginning of the quarter before lab use increases.

“We told the contractors that we didn’t want the labs closed the first few days of class because students are printing syllabi and stuff like that,” Greenberger said. “We tried to pick the quietest time to minimize the inconvenience.”

The computer lab in room 005, typically used for group work, will be used for individual work during the closure, and a row of computers will be designated for printing only, Greenberger said.

Some students are worried about the availability of printers in Mason during the week of renovation.

“There is another lab, but there are so many Fisher students that it will be crowded,” said Wenwen Cai, a fourth-year in accounting and finance. “I don’t think many students have a printer in their home so to print in the lab in school is their option. But it’s just for a week so maybe it will be fine.”

Greenberger said the students’ printer usage was taken into consideration.

“I suggested putting a limit on how long anybody can use the computer; make it 10 minutes so there will be much more of a flow,” he said. “Some students have complained, but we actually were very thoughtful because we wanted the inconvenience to occur at the beginning of the quarter. By the end of next week the lab will be open, and also there are other labs on campus students can use.”

The renovation project as a whole is expected to cost $6.5-7 million, according to a March 9 publication of Fisher, Ink., a student-run news magazine.


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