Ethernet connection expanded in UA area
An extensive construction project is underway that will further connect the entire UA campus under one Internet service provider.
The University of Arizona Ethernet connection, which services most campus buildings and residence halls, will soon extend to the greek houses on East First Street.
Along with the fraternity and sorority structures, the connection will service the new university police station, which is expected to be finished in March.
"The construction involves the communication data lines which are going down to the new UAPD police station, but it will also create an infrastructure for the fraternities and sororities to plug into the U of A Internet base." said Rick Marsh, construction project manager for Facilities Design and Construction
A four-foot trench is being dug on the north side of East First Street to store the data lines. Al Anderson, telecommunication senior engineer at CCIT, said the copper telephone cable and fiber-optic wire should be laid by mid-November.
"We are putting in (underground) conduits on the street corners which will extend the campus infrastructure of the Ethernet," he said.
Anderson said the UA is funding the construction project, but students will still be charged for the university Internet services.
"The university is responsible for the connection up to the road, but it is up to them (greek community) from the street to the building," he said.
Anderson said that the university is negotiating prices for the Ethernet connection at some of the greek houses.
Construction has not come without a hassle to students. Residents of the Parker House, 1775 E. First St., have complained about the noise created by early morning construction.
"It is really annoying, especially last week. I was woken up at 6 a.m. by the bulldozers," said Steffani Szczuka, a business freshman.
Others said they were concerned about the dangers involved with construction and the interruption of the campus commute.
"It's a real pain getting in and out," said Audrey Marks, an anthropology freshman. "The other day when I went to class, I didn't know that there was a trench in front of my dorm - I almost stepped in it."
Melissa Dryden, project coordinator for Facilities Design and Construction, said the work will continue for the next two months. The area work in front of the Parker House will continue for another two weeks, she said.
While students have complained about the construction, the future Ethernet connection has changed the way some students view the project.
"At first I was really irritated with it (construction), but now that I know that we're getting Ethernet, I'm very excited," Marks said.
Bob Gordon, director of Greek Life, said fraternity and sorority members are also excited.
"We think it's a great thing," he said. "The ability to get them (network connections) has been made much easier."
According to Gordon, not all of the houses will be using the new Ethernet lines. Each chapter must personally finance the installation process for their structure.