Parrish renovations nearing “bitter end”

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

The renovations to Parrish Hall will not be completed by the end of October Break as previously promised. According to campus planner Susan Sayer, “the new projected completion date is the second week in November.” The main occupant of the new Parrish, the Admissions Office, will be moving on October 26th, a week later than originally planned. After Admissions moves, the work that remains “includes the west elevator, west center egress stair and some building signs.”

The continuing lack of elevator access is a particular source of frustration for Parrish residents. Fourth-floor residents Kai Iwasaki ’09 and Minju Kim ’09 both agreed that “we want our elevator now.” Walking up four flights of stairs, said Kim, “is like having practice every day… I can feel my muscles getting stronger!”

As frustrating as it may seem, there are good reasons for the delay in scheduling. Like any renovation project, reports Sayer, many of Parrish’s problems “were not uncovered until excavation and demolition.” There were also unanticipated complications, like the sprinkler system now being installed in the attic crawl spaces. Although its installation was not planned for in the intital schedule, “the fire marshal has required its inclusion, so it was added to the scope of work – and schedule.”

Some of Parrish’s functions will not be complete until the “bitter end,” but Sayer reflects that “Considering field conditions and other complications, I’m pleased that the schedule has not extended even further.”

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