Calecas Hall lobby renovations to be completed soon


Photo by Chris Plaisance

Renovations to the lobby in Calecas Hall began on Jul. 29, 2019. The renovations currently have no set completion date, but the project is expected to be finished soon.

Alex Coad, director of residential living, said the renovations were expected to be completed before the start of the 2019 fall semester.

According to Coad, there is a long bidding process that needed to be completed, which delayed the start of construction.

Some of the upgrades in Calecas include new flooring, new paint on all the walls and updated lighting fixtures.

Coad said the new lighting will create a more open feel in the space and that the new paint will match with the Nicholls State University colors. Coad also said the lobby in Calecas is nearing the end of a total renovation.

Chris Plaisance, a junior business major from Valentine and a Calecas Hall resident, said he wished he had more of a say in the renovations.

“I feel our thoughts should have been considered on what could have been done to improve the lobby,” Plaisance said.

Even though Plaisance had concerns about the renovations to the lobby, he said he is sure students will enjoy it.

“I’m sure many residents will like the new look the lobby has and will use it when it is completed,” Plaisance said.

In addition to new walls and flooring, the lobby’s kitchen area is also being updated with all new appliances. The new lobby will also include a bar-style computer station where students can complete their work.

Coad said he also hopes to have the pool table redone, as well.

Megan Henshaw, hall director of Calecas Hall, said the only major issue so far has been community building.

“Building community has been hard, but other than that, it’s been okay. The residents are still able to knock on our doors and ask questions,” Henshaw said.

Coad and housing staff encourage residents of Calecas Hall to utilize the space in the Brady Clubhouse while renovations are being completed.

“We encourage people if they want to play pool, to come to the Brady Clubhouse, and come here and use the pool, and kind of utilize this space right now,” Coad said.

Students are also able to hang out in the Calecas Hall courtyard until renovations are completed.

One of the main concerns for students and staff in Calecas is safety.

“Someone only works the desk at night, so it’s kind of hard to know who is and isn’t in Calecas during the day,” Tyler Yates, a sophomore residential assistant in Calecas Hall, said.

Coad said that because Calecas Hall is part of the police station, there should be no major safety threats during the day.

Starting at 4 p.m., Calecas Hall housing staff work at a desk and check-in students until the building closes. Coad said there is more of a risk of a threat at night, when the police station is closed.

During the spring semester of 2019, students living in Calecas Hall received an email about an increase in price to live in the dorm. The lobby renovations were included in the 10% rate increase, but they were not the only reason.

Calecas Hall formerly was the same price to live in as Ellender Hall. Coad said the housing department chose to raise the rate by 10% because Calecas Hall offers more privacy than Ellender Hall.

According to Coad, there is also a higher demand for living in Calecas Hall, and with the new lobby renovations, the space will be even better.

“It will be one of the best lobbies we have once it’s done,” Coad said.

While some students wish they had more of a say in the renovations, others are excited to see the completed space.

“The new room is going to look a lot nicer. I’m excited to hang out and play pool in the new lobby,” Bradley Matherne, a junior biology major from Larose and resident of Calecas Hall, said.