The opening of the new academic year at Roanoke College typically brings with it changes to the look and feel of campus.
The start of the 2020-21 year is no different, with the important exception of numerous precautions taken to keep the campus community safe and limit the spread of COVID-19 virus. But standard upkeep, renovation and building improvement projects have been completed or are in progress on campus.
Update on summer and fall projects
The College had planned to embark on an extensive set of campus projects this summer and into the fall. But in response to COVID-19, the College is now focusing on work that supports the health and safety of the College community.
This means that some projects, such as the Lofts at Alumni Gym, will be delayed, allowing for needed attention to the expansion of classroom and dining spaces in support of social distancing.
Below is the latest summary of the most prominent projects, all of which are funded:
Summer/Fall Project List:
- Antrim Chapel – Leaking roof replaced
- Smith, Wells and Yonce Halls – Bathrooms updated
- Fox Hall – Interior facelift, similar in scope to work performed in Marion Hall last year
- Chalmers – Windows replaced on upper floors in phase two of the window replacement project
- Colket Center – Replace worn carpet in high-traffic areas
- Administration building – Replace severely deteriorated fascia boards
- Energy efficiency – Installation of LED lighting, including outside pole lights and Caldwell Beamer Ritter complex.
- Pave severely eroded and pothole-ridden student parking lot P4 on Market Street near Marion Hall.
Projects Phased or Deferred:
- Lofts at Alumni Gym – This project has been delayed to a future date, to be determined.
- Commons and Cavern updates – COVID-19 has impacted the pace of design development and feasibility of these projects. The College will continue to develop the projects for future implementation, likely within the next two years.
As part of the City of Salem’s Downtown Plan, College Avenue received a facelift this spring and summer. Contractors replaced concrete sidewalks with wide brick walkways, and historic-style lighting replaced traditional street lights. There are also more parking spots beside West Hall.
The project aims to create more space for people to spend time outdoors, serve as another location for local business owners, offer outdoor dining to restaurants, quiet traffic, and maintain the historic feel of the downtown area.
The next phase of downtown improvements will include work on the Broad Street and Main Street area near the Farmers Market.
Counseling Services moves to Bast
Counseling Services is temporarily relocating to 220 Bast for the 2020-21 academic year, due to concerns related to COVID-19. Counseling Services is part of a larger integrated department, Student Health and Counseling Services.
The temporary location change will limit potential exposure to the COVID-19 virus, while allowing Health and Counseling Services the opportunity to reimagine how to safely provide services to students based on guidelines and recommendations from the Virginia Department of Health (VDH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the American College Health Association (ACHA). Health Services will remain in 211 High Street.