Construction projects in Cable and Reitman residence halls in North Quad are finally completed, except for a few small projects such as installing signage, according to Senior Vice President for Operations Jim Gray. The campus renovations first began during the summer, in early July. According to Gray, renovations include new furniture, paint, new flooring across the building, new bathrooms, new bath exhaust systems, new sewer piping and plumbing and new lighting in all public areas.
On Sept. 4, The Brandeis Hoot reported that the Reitman balcony was incomplete and that rooms signs that should have braille were only printed pieces of paper. Gray said the university had to reorder the braille signs. The balcony is now complete; however the signs remain computer paper.
As the construction is nearly finished, most students who live in Cable and Reitman no longer notice it, although they report the noise was irritating in the morning at times when the year began. Students also reported the small annoyance of having to dodge workers and construction tools in the halls.
Halley Geringer ’19 who lives in Reitman said in an email to The Hoot, “I first noticed the renovations starting during the first week of school. If I remember correctly, it was the first Friday of the school year, and my roommate and I were woken up to the sound of really loud hammering. We walked out of our room to see lots of ladders and tools and of course construction workers in the hallway.”
Eeshani Nagarkar ’19, who also lives in Reitman, said, “I personally think it’s great that the dorms are getting renovated, but it can be annoying having a bunch of random people in the dorm when you’re trying to take a shower or get to your room quickly.”
Julia Ryan ’19, who lives in Cable, said that when moving in before orientation, “I noticed right away that the bathrooms had no soap dispensers, and at least one of the lounges had no furniture. That got sorted out in the first couple of weeks but it was definitely a surprise.” Ryan also mentioned occasionally having to dodge utility trucks outside her building in the morning.
Despite these inconveniences, the student consensus is that the renovations to the dorm buildings were worth the prolonged construction and were beneficial to all.
Geringer confirmed construction on the Reitman balcony is complete; after the first week of September, signs were posted warning students not to walk on the balcony for safety concerns. She also said crews repainted the bathrooms and installed exit signs.
“Overall, the changes have been beneficial and have never caused any major inconveniences,” said Geringer.
Nagarkar echoed this, praising the new furniture and updated bathrooms, stating, “I think all the changes that were made are beneficial because we have nicer furniture, bathrooms, carpeting and an all around better dorm.”
“I feel like the [first-years] that are living there now are living in an entirely different dorm and getting an entirely different experience,” said Anna Craven ’18, who lived in Reitman last year.