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Students, teachers complain about Psych construction

By Ty Young
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
September 13, 1999

Construction projects near the Psychology building continue to disrupt class lectures, according to both students and teachers.

Complaints have been raised concerning the jackhammering on the Integrated Learning Center project. Inside the Psychology building, drilling and hammering on two unrelated renovation projects has disturbed students and teachers as well.

"It's loud constantly in our classrooms, with the banging and drilling," said undeclared freshman Courtni Price. "The teacher has to stop talking and wait for it to quite down, or she has to yell."

Currently, both UA Facilities Management and Facilities Design and Construction are working on projects in the Psychology building. These projects, coupled with the ongoing Mall construction, have been targeted as the cause of the noise distractions for classes conducted inside the building.

"It's right here, right next to our classroom. We can barely hear the teacher speak," said education freshman Marlena Garcia.

According to University of Arizona spokeswoman Sharon Kha, the jackhammers were used last week to remove the Historical Memorial Fountain during ILC construction. She added that new regulations concerning time for actual construction will go into effect next Monday.

Over the next week, contractors will begin to organize their workers in order to comply with the new time standards.

Kha said workers will remove large quantities of dirt from the Mall overnight, from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. She added that the majority of work will be done at night in order to keep classroom disputations to a minimum.

While these rules are expected to reduce classroom interruptions, they relate only to the ILC project, not the current projects inside the Psychology building.

"The problem is that the work on the Psychology building is being handled by Facilities Maintenance, not the contractors working on the ILC," Kha said. "We need to do some coordinating with the construction projects. With so many things going on, it is difficult to get everybody on the same schedule."

Al Tarcola, Facilities Management director, said their project involves only minor changes and renovations to classrooms in the building. He also added that Facilities Design and Construction was conducting construction around the basement and surface levels of the Psychology building.

Officials from Facilities Design and Construction were not able to be reached for comment.

According to Kha, the loud jackhammers should be attributed to the ILC project, not the Psychology building renovations. Both construction workers and UA officials are working together to alleviate the problems.

Regardless of which project is responsible for the disruptions, students said they are having difficulty hearing their teachers.

Although much of the attention concerning on-campus construction centers around difficulties with changing transportation routes, distracting noise levels have created new problems.

"The noise pretty much is the worst part of it. It interrupts my class in (Psychology) 205," said Nathan McIntyre, a freshman anthropology and astronomy student. "Every time they have it going on, it interrupts class."

Other students attending classes in the building agreed that the noise level is very disruptive.

"We'll be sitting there listening to the teacher speak and she'll have to stop in the middle of a sentence," said undecided freshman Marie Parrish. "The lecture is always interrupted. She'll have to stop and wait for the noise to die down,"

According to Kha, the majority of the ILC noise problems ended with the removal of the Historical Memorial Fountain; jackhammers should no longer be needed.

However, if workers need to use them again, it will not be allowed from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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