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September 12, 1996

Project to focus on safety systems in some buildings

A $5 million project to improve safety sys- tems in several Pitt buildings will start in mid-September and is expected to continue for approximately 15 months.

Buildings involved include Benedum, Chevron Science Center, Salk, LIS Building and the sixth floor of Forbes Quadrangle. The work will include the installation of new state-of-the-art fire alarm systems, emergency generators, security access systems, exit lights and fire sprinkler systems.

According to Glenn Avick, director of engineering and construction in the Office of Facilities Management, the project is being fully funded by the Pennsylvania Department of General Services and marks the first time that a state project has been delegated to the University for implementation.

The project is part of former Gov. Bob Casey's Jump Start program to revitalize Pennsyl-vania's economy through various public construction projects. Facilities Management was given control of the project because of a shortage of qualified supervisory personnel in the state Department of General Services.

"Each university in the [Jump Start] program was given a couple of such projects to implement," Avick noted.

To avoid as much inconvenience as possible for the occupants of the buildings involved, the majority of the work will be performed between the hours of 8 p.m. and 6 a.m.

Site security and assistance with building access will be provided throughout the project by both the University Police Department and a private security firm.

Building occupants also will be notified well in advance of any work in their areas so that preparations can be made to minimize disruptions, according to Avick. Additional information on the project is available from Bill Burke, the project's construction manager, at the Office of Facilities Management, 624-9500. The safety systems project is one of several construction and renovation projects that will get underway this year. Nearly $5.2 million in building projects were included in the University's fiscal 1997 budget approved by the Board of Trustees on July 19. They include: Salk Hall, exterior repairs, $450,000; Bellefield Hall, upgrade electrical system and generator, $415,000; Cathedral of Learning, upgrade emergency power system, $300,000; Hillman Library, replace chiller, $250,000 and cooling tower repair, $200,000; Parran Hall, replace roof, $240,000; Stephen Foster Memorial/Cathedral of Learning, code and safety upgrades for theatre arts facilities, $230,000; William Pitt Union, replace first floor roof, $215,708; Benedum Hall, ventilation/fume exhaust improvements, $150,000 and expansion joint repairs, $105,000; Chevron Science Center, fume exhaust improvements, $150,000; Forbes Quad, carpet replacement in select areas, $100,000; Victoria Building, repair windows, $76,950. A total of $500,000 also was budgeted for general building infrastructure upgrades; $150,000 for sidewalk and driveway repairs; $100,000 for automatic door repair/replacement; $75,000 for steam system repairs, and $50,000 for window repair/replacement.

Also included are the following regional campus projects: Johnstown Krebs Hall, roof replacement, $300,000; general sidewalk/concrete repairs, $50,000.

Greensburg Lynch Hall, retaining wall repairs, $150,000; tile repairs in student center, $37,000.

Bradford Swarts Hall, improve office ventilation, $40,000; roof replacement, $27,000 and repair of exterior walls, $14,000. A total of $25,000 also was budgeted to replace sidewalks.

Titusville Student union/gym, replace roof, $155,000; Haskell Library, repair retaining wall, $25,000; replace locks and re-key buildings, $20,000.

According to the budget report, the list of projects, but not the dollar totals, is subject to change throughout the year as circumstances dictate.

–Mike Sajna

Filed under: Feature,Volume 29 Issue 2

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