News Pulse - State University of New York at New Paltz

Smaller construction projects making big impact

Construction projects like the new Athletic and Wellness Center and the renovation of van den Berg Hall are on most people's radar. Often times, however, the most overlooked campus improvements can have the most significant impact.

John Shupe, assistant vice president of Facilities Management, said that his crew spent many hours last summer working on a long list of projects that ranged from upgrading the fire alarm system in residence halls to adding additional parking spaces on campus.

Also on that list was the renovation of three residence halls, College, Shango and Bouton, which all received new lighting, paint, carpeting and signage. In addition, Shupe said that all the windows in Capen Hall were replaced with energy efficient units with internal blinds.

Other smaller projects that are having a significant impact on the campus are the total refurbishment of the racquetball courts in Elting Gymnasium and the North tennis courts.

"The nice thing about many of the projects is that they were really student centered," said Shupe.

The campus grounds also received some extra attention, with the replacement of Campus Pond footbridge by the Student Union Building (SUB), the repair and replacement of asphalt at the footbridge by the Campus Pond spillway, the repainting of all crosswalks, and the painting of the men's and women's ball field dugouts in the school colors.

David Eaton, vice president of Enrollment Management, said that all these little things add up and make a great impression on visitors to campus.

"A new athletic facility is certainly a help, but the ongoing maintenance of our current infrastructure is also just as important for the prospective student and their families," he said.

Academic buildings that saw action over the summer include Phase II of the renovation of the Sojourner Truth Library, which included the replacement of carpet in the former tutoring area, quiet reading room, circulation area and office spaces.

Smiley Art Building, room 118A was turned into a projection room and a new presentation wall was installed for Studio Art classroom 118. The project also included a new HVAC system for classroom 118A. The Humanities Building faculty offices, B1-B4, received new HVAC units, and new carpet was installed in 604.

Shupe said that another not so obvious project, but one that will be felt by most students on campus, was the replacement of the SUB chiller with a new, energy efficient 600-ton chiller for improved air conditioning.

More information and weekly updates on all of the campus construction projects can be found on the construction Web site at For more information on Capital Planning Council projects, log onto

OCTOBER 10, 2005
Volume 3, Issue 20

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