July 30, 2004, Peterborough
As clean-up continues at Trent University following July 15 flooding,
the health and safety of students, staff and faculty members is the top
priority. The University community has pulled together to assist one another,
and is also working to support the broader community through this crisis.
Trent University staff members and external consultants have now had an
opportunity to fully assess water damage and report that recovery and
reconstruction at Otonabee College will take longer than first anticipated,
impacting first term operations at the college in September. It is expected
to take another three weeks for the surface areas of the college to dry.
“The sheer volume of water that covered over 25,000 square feet
of floor space will take longer to dry than first anticipated,”
said Don Cumming, senior director, Public Affairs. “Since our crews
pumped six inches of water from Otonabee College’s basement we have
been running dehumidifiers non-stop to remove the dampness.”
The flooding necessitated the removal of office furniture, computers,
books and papers from faculty and staff offices. Immediately after the
flood, steps were taken to store office contents elsewhere. Since more
widespread damage was discovered, it has been recommended that everything
be moved out of the flooded sections of the lower level of Otonabee College
and that the drywall be partially removed.
The resulting restoration will see faculty and staff offices relocated
for what may be as long as the duration of the first term. The immediate
priority has been to re-open the department offices closed since the flood;
the Anthropology and Computer Studies offices and the Chairs of those
departments have been relocated to former computer labs (221.4 and 221.5
respectively) on the upper level of Otonabee College.
With few empty office spaces at the Symons Campus, one floor of a residence
wing at Peter Gzowski College at Argyle Street will be converted to offices.
These are expected to be ready for occupation in early August; cabling
and infrastructure upgrades are scheduled to start as soon as possible
and are expected to be complete for the first week of classes in September.
The Office of the Registrar is relocating classes that were to have been
taught this fall in the lower level of Otonabee College.
“We recognize that these recovery plans may present hardship for
some students, staff and faculty members, but we will be working to make
the best of a difficult situation and to assist wherever and whenever
possible,” says Professor Susan Apostle-Clark, vice president (Academic).
“We would like to thank everyone involved for their understanding,
help and patience.”
Other areas, including the basement of Mackenzie House and two homes on
Pioneer Road owned by the University were affected by the flooding, though
Peter Gzowski College at Argyle Street is the site of the Emergency Reception
Centre, established by the City of Peterborough. Trent University Director
of Conference and Hospitality Services Ashok Kaushik has been among those
working with the city over the last couple of weeks.
“We are happy to be able to help the community in this time of need,”
said Mr. Kaushik. “It makes you feel like part of the community.
You can see everyone is pitching in.”
Meanwhile, the Trent University community, including its newest members
- incoming students - is among those who have rallied in support of those
affected by the flood. Countless carloads of food and more than 20 bags
of clothing, have been delivered on behalf of Trent University students,
staff and faculty members, says Jane Rennie, of the Registrar’s
Office, who is coordinating the collection.
First-year students and their parents, who are coming to campus for the
New Student Orientation Program, are bringing with them, or buying, food
and clothing to donate to the cause.
“The incoming class has been unbelievably supportive,” says
Ms. Rennie, adding these students and their parents are coming to campus
from across Ontario and beyond. “We’ve been inundated with
an incredible amount of supplies. It’s been pretty special.”
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For further information, please contact:
Professor Susan Apostle-Clark, Vice President (Academic) 748-1011,
Alicia Doris, Communications Officer, 748-1011, ext. 1456