Your guide to campus construction


Click to enlarge(Sean Brady/The Omega)

The TRU campus might look a little different next year – here’s how

From food services to alternative energy, many construction projects are underway on the TRU campus.

More alternative energy is coming to campus in the form of a 10 kilowatt photovoltaic solar installation on the roof of the Campus Activity Centre (CAC). The installation will provide enough energy to power the lighting in CAC and the plug load in TRUSU’s Independent Centre, according to TRU director of environment and sustainability Jim Gudjonson.

The $50,000 install is a joint venture between TRUSU and the department of environment and sustainability, which is using its revolving energy fund, created in 2011 following a campus-wide energy retrofit which resulted in $200,000 annual savings. Now, that money goes directly towards further energy projects and currently sits at $225,000.

Solar power isn’t exactly new to campus. In 2010, CAC, Old Main and Culinary Arts all had solar-powered water heating systems installed at a cost of $300,000.

This new system, which may be expanded in the future, will be up and running in mid-September.

Heroes, the campus pub, is set to receive a bit of a makeover. The pub will be painted “top to bottom” and will see improvements to its lighting, according to ancillary services director Glenn Read. But that’s just phase one. In phase two, slated for next year, the pub will have its bathrooms updated and the seating will be replaced.

The food services changes first announced in spring 2013 have now entered the construction phase. Barring any further delays, the CAC’s Terrace cafeteria will look a lot different in the fall. A stone pizza oven and expanded kitchen will help serve up pizza and other fresh made-to-go food. The Aramark-run locale will be called the Urban Market and will open in mid-September, Read said.

Last year’s food services plans will be going ahead in Old Main, too, but with a few changes.

The original plans called for a number of restaurants to occupy the Revvup space and beyond, but the floor load for the second floor of Old Main was found to be insufficient for a commercial kitchen in the B.C. building code, which requires 100 lbs/ft², twice what the second floor supports.

The bulk of the new construction will now take place on the mezzanine above Student Street, instead of just inside the door on the second floor, once occupied by Revvup. The mezzanine will soon be home to a still-unnamed restaurant with diverse offerings like samosas, Thai soups and other fresh made-to-go items.

The mezzanine, being a newer structure, met the requirements for a kitchen, according to Read, so the development was moved out there. The project is set to be finished by Sept. 1, 2014.

“It’s going to be a big improvement. From the flooring to the railing, there’s new soft seating going in on that level. We’re hoping it’s a nice inviting environment for students to enjoy the food and to congregate.”

The storefront that was once Revvup and Extreme Pita is seeing cosmetic upgrades and will soon become a Bento Sushi.

“To accommodate, we’ve blown through one of the walls and we’re creating additional seating for students, as well as another meeting space for students to congregate,” Read said.

Along with the new restaurants will come longer hours, intended to serve students who hang around campus after most have gone home for the day.

The washrooms at the Student Street intersection in Old Main are currently undergoing renovations. Instead of the old sequential doors, the new washrooms will be doorless. The entryways have been moved to the side, and a chicane-style entry maintains the necessary privacy. According to director of facilities Les Tabata. New fixtures have also been installed, as well as hand dryers to reduce the paper build up seen in the old washrooms.

The Clock Tower is set to be refreshed, as well.

The building’s exterior will be receiving a new coating of stucco and have its window mullions painted, according to Tabata. The building, built in 1990, is one of TRU’s oldest.

Those looking to get from Arts & Education to TRUSU’s Independent Centre will now have an easier way to get there. A new set of stairs has been installed to make the trip quicker and easier.

The CAC will be the next place of focus for upgrades, according to Read, who wants to make sure that when the president is speaking in the Grand Hall, that it’s actually in a “grand hall.”