Construction of new residence hall continues

Workers have been braving high winds and snow to continue construction of Gannon University’s new $17 million, five-floor residence hall, which – despite the Erie winter conditions – is still slated to open in fall 2011.

“The weather, obviously, slowed things down on the outside,” said Doug Zimmerman, director of Student Living. “It’s tough to lay block, it’s tough to put mud down for brick and all that stuff when it’s 50-mph gusts and the wind chill is zero. When you get up five stories, the wind is really whipping through there.”

Zimmerman said the plastic envelope that now covers the building keeps the workers dry and warm as they begin putting up studs in the walls.

Currently, he said, the staff is working together to gather specifications for appliances in the building so the appropriate wiring and plumbing can be installed.

In a September 2010 interview with The Knight, Linda Wagner, vice president of finance and administration, said the new residence hall will have capacity to house 300 students. She said the $17 million budget is all inclusive, including the 78-spot parking lot, landscaping, technology and furniture for the building.

Zimmerman noted that eight large semis full of furniture for the new residence hall will roll in during early August, and it will take almost a week to move into the suites, rooms and lounges.

The new residence hall will feature two floors of upperclassman suites and three floors of freshman suites, totaling 75 units, said Wagner, adding that the upperclassman suites will have single bedrooms and all suites will have a common area, kitchenette and two bathrooms.

Zimmerman said that entry to the building, the floors and the suites will be granted by swiping one’s Gannon I.D., while physical keys will be allocated for each of the bedrooms.

“It really helps if someone loses their key and you don’t have to re-key stuff and change locks,” he said of the new suite The 3.9 percent increase would raise tuition prices to $12,490 per semester for full-time undergraduate students in the business, humanities, education, social sciences and science programs and $13,245 per semester for full-time undergraduate students in the engineering, computer science and health professions.

ABBY BADACH

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