July 19, 2013

Brian Standring, of Standring Flooring in Leicester,

installs new carpeting on the third floor of Gordon


With the completion of athletic fields on top of the new parking garage, the construction of a new dorm on Faraday Street, and the Quad being renovated, WPI has been a bustling place this summer.

And those are just the visible projects. Elsewhere, more than a dozen small projects have been completed or are in the works.

These projects fall under the purview of Chris Salter, director of projects and engineering, who says the number of projects is typical for the summer.

“I would say it’s probably an average year,” he said from his office on Lee Street, across Park Avenue. “The one thing that makes this year feel busier is the Quad work, as it’s very visible.”

Indeed. As Salter spoke, heavy equipment was moving earth and workers in hard hats tackled the myriad tasks required to renovate the entrance to the Wedge, install new drainage, place pathways, and re-landscape.

Away from the Quad other improvements are underway, as the campus gets ready for the 2013-14 academic year.  Salter provided a quick checklist of projects:

  • Office space in Gateway One is nearing completion.
  • A classroom is being renovated in the basement of Higgins Labs.
  • The old Fire Protection lab in Higgins, vacated when the department moved to Gateway Park, is being turned into smaller, individual research labs.
  • Fifteen units in the Ellsworth Apartments are getting new kitchens.
  • So-called dry kitchens–with microwaves, refrigerators, and cabinets (but not sinks)—are being installed in Founders Hall suites.
  • Fire alarm systems will be upgraded in Olin and Atwater Kent Labs.
  • Part of the third floor in Boynton Hall is being renovated.
  • Masonry repairs are in the works at Sanford Riley Hall.
  • The exterior of Salisbury Labs will be power washed and painted.
  • Gordon Library will get new carpeting on the third floor and ceramic tile in the main entrance, on the second floor.
  • A new music technology classroom will be created in Alden Hall.
  • Fire escapes at Stratton Hall will be sand blasted and painted.

Dave Greenslit