Cores and the new repositoruy

Project Type: Capital Renovation
Completion: Summer 2018

Core samples from the earth are an important tool to answer questions about the world around us. They can help us figure out when in history a volcano erupted, an earthquake occurred and oceanic conditions over a targeted point in time. Cores can help us learn about the ecosystems on the deepest seafloor and they can even help us learn about climate change, historically and in the future. And now the Antarctic cores have a new home in Corvallis.

The new Marine and Geology Repository is complete and ready to begin receiving these resources from their previous home in Florida.

Since 1972 Oregon State University has housed the Marine and Geology Repository for the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences. The Repository houses sediment cores from lakes, sediment traps and, now, the Antarctic. The National Science Foundation awarded Oregon State University curatorial stewardship of the Antarctic core collection, previously based at Florida State University (who will continue to co-manage the samples). It was the job of the MGR to pack up and move those ice cores across the county, in the heat of the summer, to a new facility.

The Marine and Geology Repository has been moved to a renovated facility on Research Way, sharing a building with OSU Printing and Mailing. The Antarctic core collection will be combined with Oregon State’s current collection in the new, 95,000 square foot facility. Cold storage of the cores will occupy 18,000 square feet of 37-degree space and there will be plenty of room for students and other researchers to come to learn and collaborate with the Marine and Geology Repository.

Project Type: Capital Renewal
Estimated Completion: Ongoing

 

Rules governing the use of state funding has stressed operating and maintenance expenses for much of the university, leading to OSU’s current deferred maintenance backlog. However, OSU has a plan to tackle this serious problem.

For 2015-2017, the University was allocated $26 million to address critical renewal needs. The university prioritized projects, considering:

  1. Is this project critical for a building to operate safely and for people to have access?
  2. Will this project contribute to student, faculty and staff success?
  3. Are there other matching funds available for this project?

John Gremmels, OSU’s Capital Planner, pointed out a few of the 2015-2017 capital renewal projects that are having the biggest impact on safety, success and sustainability on our campus over the next few years.

Updates to the Gilbert Hall auditoria (rooms 124 and 224) will be more comfortable for students taking Chemistry lab courses. “The rooms will see much-improved accessibility, better circulation for students and instructors, better climate control and new seats – a better student experience,” explained Gremmels. Work will begin this summer as soon as classes end, and the plan is to have the auditoria complete by the start of winter term 2019.

Roof replacement is big business during the summer in Oregon and OSU is no exception. Roofs on Agriculture and Life Sciences Building and Cordley and Burt Halls are due to be replaced before the fall term begins, checking off another big line item on the maintenance backlog.

Capital renewal happens off the Corvallis campus, too. The visitor center of Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport was renovated, including a new octopus lair.

University Facilities, Infrastructure and Operations has published the list of 2015-2017 list of capital renewal projects to keep the university informed on its progress. With all this progress comes inevitable road closures and detours. Campus residents can find information on construction effects on campus at OSU Campus Closures, Shutdowns and Detours.

Steam tunnel construction near Peavy Construction
(photo: Erin Martin)

While Boston’s “Big Dig” project was a 25-year megaproject, OSU’s current “big dig,” a steam tunnel installation, will finish by the fall of 2018. The steam tunnel installation is a large-scale infrastructure project designed to improve the reliability and resiliency of heating and steam usage across the Corvallis campus.

All of the Corvallis campus’s steam and half of its electricity is produced by the Energy Center, a co-generation facility located on Southwest 35th St. and Southwest Jefferson Way. Steam is used across campus for heating buildings, but also for heating water, for sterilizing lab equipment, and even in restaurant steam tables used to keep food hot. When the Energy Center started operating at capacity in June of 2011, it was awarded LEED Platinum certification, which recognizes the Energy Center’s efficient use of energy resources.

The Energy Center currently feeds steam to campus by a single large steam pipe. In late 2016 and early 2017, the steam line began failing, which created an opportunity to improve the steam delivery system for OSU’s Corvallis campus. The new system features two steam feeder lines, in addition to the steam return line. When complete, in normal Oregon weather conditions, one steam line will deliver steam to campus. In the event of extreme cold, or a line failure, a simple valve can be turned and the other line will be put into operation immediately – resulting in no interruption of steam supply to campus. This redundancy will also help facilities services address maintenance during the university’s annual steam shutdown. 

“The benefit of the tunnel is that we can run steam, electricity, and even water to campus as a closed system,” explains Joseph Majeski, director of facilities services. “No catastrophes. If there is a problem we can reach it, assess the problem, and fix it. No digging required.”  

The steam tunnel project will cost approximately $10 million and will be paid from capital renewal funds. In fact, the steam tunnel project will allow other issues to be addressed, like road conditions on Jefferson Way, lighting, pedestrian and bike facility improvements.

With a campus as large as the Corvallis campus’s 570 acres, Majeski said facilities services staff try to create redundant systems as much as possible to allow for uninterrupted campus operations.

“Keeping classes going, laboratories functioning and campus running. That’s the goal,” says Majeski.

Goal

In 2018 we set out to learn what the campus wanted to know about capital projects being completed on campus, from new construction to major renovations, to transportation updates and more. Being a more transparent organization is one of UFIO’s goals, so one of the first steps to becoming more transparent is identifying what our campus residents (students, staff, faculty and visitors) want to learn about—and the best way to deliver that information.

Method

We distributed a five-question survey via OSU Today to campus the week of Feb 12, and sent it to a few closed groups of campus workers. Thirty-four people responded. We realize that surveys are very self-selecting, but this survey gave us a starting point to implement effective project communications across campus.

Insights

Ninety-seven percent of respondents wanted to learn more about projects on campus. The top three topics campus residents wanted to learn about:

  • New construction
  • Major renovations
  • Projects to beautify the campus

Campus residents are looking to find out how their lives are affected by projects, with 34% indicating interest in closures, detours and ways in which campus operations would change. Features are important to residents; 31% wanted to learn the details of projects. Two respondents noted that project cost (and who was paying) was key.

OSU Today was the clear winner for communication method, with 44% of respondents choosing it. Email newsletters were also popular.

Recommendations

Project communication updates involving new construction, renovations, the effects of them, and projects to beautify campus can be the first focus of a project communication initiative.

Campus residents want to learn more about our projects, and another step in upping our transparency is sending the information directly to them, rather than having them search it out on a passive website. A once-a-month opt-in email newsletter which is also linked to in OSUToday for three days is a good start at providing the clarity wanted by our campus residents.

Full Survey Results

Project Communication Survey Results

 

Located between the two most prominent quads on the OSU campus, Strand Agriculture Hall has been at the center of the OSU experience for over a century.  In 2013, OSU began significant renovation of this historic building.   Renovation of this 116,000 square foot academic building improved safety, accessibility, materials, energy efficiency, and comfort, as well as redefined the building, both physically and programmatically, for its next 100 years of service.

Strand Agricultural Hall was built in three phases, beginning in 1909 and finishing in 1913. The structure was designed by architect John Bennes, who designed many of the campus’s most notable buildings. In 2013, OSU began a major $24.9 million renovation project. The renovation’s primary improvements were related to seismic resilience, accessibility, as well as energy upgrades. One of the most visually significant changes was the addition of the West Portico, which looks out over the Memorial Union Quad. This portico replaced a small wooden porch that was out of scale and did not provide the east-west orientation originally envisioned for the building. The design of the West Portico incorporates design elements that echo the building’s original porticos, but is appropriately distinguishable as an addition. It succeeds in finding a balance of meeting contemporary needs, including accessibility, while also being aesthetically sympathetic to the structure’s architectural character.

Strand Ag Hall Renovation Project receives Corvallis Historic Preservation Award by the City of Corvallis Historic Resources Commission, 2016.

In 2016, the City of Corvallis Historic Resources Commission awarded a Certificate of Merit to Oregon State University, Hennebery Eddy Architects, and Hoffman Construction for the care and investment placed in preserving the Strand Agricultural Hall building, an important Corvallis and OSU historic resource.

Faculty, staff and students are invited to attend the first open house for the Benton Slope Planning Study.

Benton Slope

The study will review circulation in the area surrounding historic Benton Hall and provide recommendations for improved circulation, with focus on pedestrian accessibility, bicycle circulation, vehicle circulation, parking and lighting.

The planning team will be available to provide an overview of the project and obtain input ideas and issues from people who work and use this area of campus.

This will be a casual format.  Please feel free to drop in at any time during hours listed below.

  • Date:                    January 14
  • Time:                   11 AM to 4 PM
  • Location:            Memorial Union, Room 206

If you have any questions, please contact: Ned Nabeta at 541-954-0294.

Lori fulton 112015Capital Planning and Development Project Manager Lori Fulton was recently recognized in the Northwest Mountain Minority Supplier Development Council newsletter.

In partnership with Christine Atwood with Procurement, Contracts and Materials Management (PCMM) staff, Lori’s efforts are recognized for  commitment to making a positive impact in the diverse supplier community.  As Lori stated,  “Diversity is a huge piece of what we do, mandated by the President and the Board of Trustees.”

Click here to read the story

On October 23, 2015, an 18,000 lb. generator was installed at Milam Hall, which will provide 450KW of standby power to the building. To deliver the generator to its enclosure, the crane, truck and crew had to maneuver under trees and through a lawn, while maneuvering over steel plates and plywood to protect the sidewalk and lawn from the enormous weight.

 

Similar to the generator that was installed earlier this year at the Pharmacy Building, the work was a collaborative effort.  Capital Planning and Development project and construction managers managed the slab and enclosure construction, while Facilities Services Electrical Shop managed the building upgrades and electrical work to tie the generator to building systems.

2015_sustainable_campus_150x150The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education recognized OSU’s achievements in Campus Engagement and Grounds in their 2015 Sustainable Campus Index.

The 2015 Sustainable Campus Index highlights top-performing colleges and universities in 17 areas, as measured by the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS). The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. As of October 2015, there were 725 STARS participants in 24 countries, which included reports from 359 institutions in 9 countries.

OSU achieved 100% of points for Campus Engagement, which recognizes institutions that provide students with sustainability learning experiences outside the formal curriculum, and support employee engagement, training, and development in sustainability.

OSU achieved 98.3% of points in Grounds, which recognizes institutions that plan and maintain their grounds with sustainability in mind by minimizing the use of toxic chemicals, protecting wildlife habitat and conserving resources.

Tebeau Dedication 034The League of American Bicyclists has recognized Oregon State University as a Gold-level Bicycle Friendly University, one of only 12 universities in the United States that has achieved this level.

Gold level indicates that the university has implemented bicycle projects, policies and programs to connect transportation and recreation throughout the community and that a strong commitment to cycling is demonstrated. Only Platinum level is higher; as of 2015 only five universities had achieved Platinum status.

This award grants OSU access to a variety of free tools and technical assistance from the organization to become even more bicycle-friendly. By investing in bicycling, universities can decrease their carbon footprint, see mental and physical health benefits for staff and students, reduce parking demands, create positive connections with the local community, and foster a healthy campus culture.”

 

See full story at OSU News and Research Communications