Photo by: Jeffery Miller

The construction area outside of the main entrance to the Bollinger Memorial Student Union on Wednesday February 15.

Union construction causes mixed feelings for students

February 16, 2017

Students have been detoured to use alternate entrances to the student union because of construction on the main entrance.

Nicholls is replacing the cement steps that were located at the main entrance of the building, which is scheduled to be completed by the end of February or early March. It is phase one of the construction and will be followed by two more phases.

Phase two is going to replace the iron steps that were located near the entrance to the SPA and SGA offices, along with the cement steps located between Talbot Hall and the Student Union.

“Both of these staircases were fairly old,” Ciera Eugene, secondary education junior from Laplace, said. “They could be considered a safety hazard, especially with the number of students who used the staircases on a daily basis.”

Phase three will knock down the wall located on the raised entrance to the Union and replace it with a rod iron façade that will match the cafeteria.

“We received no complaints about the steps or the wall,” Terry Braud Jr., vice president of administration and finance, said. “We did, however, begin to notice the wear and tear on the steps. Our faculty, on their inspections, noticed they had some areas where minor safety concerns could have become a problem. This prompted us to begin to plan ways to repair. We are also trying to dress up the area by having metal stairs and the rod iron wall.”

The construction has caused a flurry of emotions from students. Some students disagree with the time period Nicholls chose to start construction.

“I don’t think anything is wrong with the construction,” Sarah Allen, professional chemistry freshman from Chauvin, said. “I do think the timing is a little weird. It is the beginning of the semester. We just returned from winter break when the project could have been worked on.”

Some students are indifferent about the construction, while others see it as a chance to improve.

James Murphy, biology pre-pharmacy freshman from New Orleans, is content with the construction and has hopes about the possible outcome of the construction.

“I hope that they are not only redoing the steps, but also adding on a wheelchair accessible ramp,” Murphy said. “The ramp would help convenience students instead of them having to go the way to the side of the building, they could enter closer to the entrance.”

Shelbie Comeaux, business freshman from Morgan City, said the construction is an inconvenience.

In order to lessen the inconvenience the construction has placed upon students, Nicholls planned several activities to take place in the areas where students are rerouted.

“One thing we really wanted to do was make it more fun for students to have to use these alternate routes,” Kristen Anselmi, marketing/ communication specialists said. “We are very excited about all of the fun activities that we hope will distract the students from the construction. One of things we are very excited about is we will be having a food truck from New Orleans come out for about three days the week before Mardi Gras.”

The construction in front the student union is the first phase in a three-phase process to not only ensure the safety of our students but also to enhance the overall look of the union.

“I would like to thank everyone including students, faculty and staff for participating in the various activities we have had,” Braud said. “We appreciate everyone’s patience as we try to complete some of these upgrades to enhance campus.”

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