As construction continues on multiple University projects, by Thanksgiving workers are expected to finish renovations to the typically high-traffic Beinecke Plaza, one of the most visible work sites and a popular route to class for many students.
At this point, workers are still applying a rubberized roof membrane and will shortly place the granite paving blocks — the surface pedestrians actually walk on — over the membrane, said Steve Brown, University acting director of project management. He said the “very labor intensive” process will be finished by late fall.
“The waterproofing is all done. The roofing is all done,” Yale Planner Pamela Delphenich said. “They’re building back up.”
Over the summer, workers tore up the plaza around the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, removing everything above the structural slab. They also installed a sloped surface to allow for better draining. Yale designed the project so most of the work would be done over the summer, Delphenich said.
The library itself will reopen to visitors this Tuesday, Beinecke Director Frank Turner said. He said three or four steps at the corner of Wall and High streets will lead to a wooden ramp to the library’s side door.
Beinecke remained open to researchers throughout the summer and only closed to visitors two weeks ago, Turner said.
“The Beinecke is alive, well, and functioning for students, faculty, classes and visiting research scholars,” Turner said in an e-mail. “We just are not as externally beautiful as usual.”
The roof of Woodbridge Hall, which houses offices for administrators including Yale President Richard Levin and Secretary Linda Lorimer, is also being renovated. The officers have spent the summer in Betts House on Prospect Street.
“We’ve enjoyed it up here this summer,” Levin said. “We’ll be moving back around December [or] January.”
Delphenich said a handicapped ramp is also being constructed to allow access to Woodbridge and Woolsey halls.
While the renovations on Beinecke continue, the University is also moving forward on projects in the residential colleges. The final work on Pierson College, renovated this past summer, should be finished by the middle of September, Brown said.
Davenport College, next on the list for renovation this year, is about 20 percent complete, Brown said, and on track for an August 2005 finishing date. He said most of the work right now is demolition, as builders prepare to reconfigure the college’s basement activity space.
“Davenport is going to be fine,” Levin said. “We’ll move right through Davenport and go to Trumbull the next year.”
Though Silliman College will not undergo a complete facelift until the summer of 2006, Yale began a series of projects this summer designed to allow the University to close the large college for only one academic year. This work, mainly a new roof and dormers for the brick part of the college, was “very successful,” Delphenich said.
Brown said the University is currently in the design phase for Silliman’s next stage of renovations, which is to occur next summer, but the plans have not yet received the final approval of the Yale Corporation.