Summer capital projects bring improvements to Lima campus
Sustainability and efficiency most common outcome
Students at the Ohio State University at Lima have returned to many improvements on campus – both obvious and subtle.
The biggest addition is the center of student life on campus, the Perry Webb Student Life Building. Construction on Ohio State Lima’s newest building is complete. Students, faculty and staff have begun to use the new, centralized hub of student life to meet, work out, socialize, collaborate and study. The $5.2 million building houses a fitness center, grab and go food services, an information commons, multipurpose lounge space and collaborative work spaces. The ribbon cutting ceremony is scheduled for Sept. 14, 2018.
The big, open space with windows to the Quad has been drawing students in as they see friends, drop by the barista to pick up a Starbucks, or slide in early for a work out.
“The Webb is changing the feel of campus. Students are here earlier and stick around longer,” said Shane McCrory, director of student life. “Because they have a place to gather, there are more conversations, more interaction. The Webb has a lively, welcoming feel that makes students want to spend some time.”
Across campus, Reed Hall and Cook Hall have undergone renovations that will make them more efficient and will contribute to the overall sustainability of campus.
Working in conjunction with Rhodes State College, Cook Hall’s HVAC system has a $885,714 upgrade and is complete. Both the chiller and boiler have been replaced. Direct digital controls have replaced the less efficient pneumatic controls.
“With the changes in Cook Hall’s HVAC, we expect energy savings from the new efficiencies and also anticipate that comfort levels will increase,” said Ron Kaufman, facilities superintendent for Ohio State Lima and Rhodes State College.
The co-located institutions used $10,000 in funds from an AEP rebate program to upgrade the gymnasium lights to brighter and more efficient LEDs. In addition to increasing the efficiency of the lights which should decrease energy costs, the new lights eliminate the hum of the old. A further addition of sound-deadening materials in the gym will also help improve the acoustics in the facility.
Ohio State’s $750,000 roof replacement project for Reed Hall using capital funds from the State of Ohio is nearly complete. Rhodes State used similar funding to replace the roof on Cook Hall.
Students who were on campus during the summer term may have noticed occasional planned disruptions in electric power as contractors worked to install generators in Galvin Hall and the Student Services Center. The $750,000 project from state capital funds provides life safety and freeze protection for Galvin Hall and a whole building generator for the Student Services Center.
A $198,716 project to upgrade the HVAC system in the Student Services Center began this summer and will be completed this academic year.
The pilot program by the College of Nursing to bring telehealth services to regional campuses has begun its first full academic year. Ohio State invested more than $84,000 in local and Ohio State’s College of Nursing funds to open the Ohio State Total Health and Wellness at Ohio State Lima clinic in the student services center.
“On-site healthcare adds another dimension of health and wellness to the Ohio State Lima campus," said Interim Dean and Director Joseph Brandesky. "Our students and employees now come from more than half of the 88 counties in Ohio. Some of them drive long distances or those living near campus are a fair distance from their primary healthcare providers. The facility provides a means for them to address day-to-day health concerns.”
Much like all the roads and highways in the area, the Lima campus has seen several summers full of paving and asphalt repair. Over the course of several summers, the Ohio State Lima and Rhodes State have invested more than $2.5 million to upgrade the roads and surface lots on campus.
After a summer of upgrades in anticipation of the Digital Flagship initiative and its iPads for incoming students, the wireless system for Ohio State students, employees and visitors is now more robust and has a greater reach on campus.
The Webb and all of the learning areas in Galvin, Reed and Science have upgraded services. Work continues in Cook, Public Service and Student Services.
In perhaps the most colorful and long-reaching sustainability project on campus, the prairie at the corner of Mumaugh and Reservoir roads has grown, literally. More than 100 species of native prairie plants were sown in June 2017 and the prairie is now in its second season of growth. Before it received its first major trim of the year, those native plants were popping up with bright blooms and digging in with deep roots.
Ohio State Lima is restoring 19 acres of tall grass prairie habitat over multiple years to be part of the Tecumseh Natural Area. Among other benefits, the prairie plants will help monarch butterflies and other insects.