FAQs About the Construction

Will the construction of the Convergence Center have an effect on tuition rates?

The building is funded by state construction bonds, not by student tuition.  This construction project will not result in an increase in tuition rates.

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When will construction start?

Beginning in mid April, some early work will prepare the site for construction work.  A number of underground utility lines need to be moved, and some work to prepare the site for construction traffic will be starting.  Groundbreaking for major construction work is tentatively set for mid to late June 2012 – after Commencement activities and the UMW Reunion Weekend.

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What are the hours of construction?

Once the main construction activity starts in June, the general construction schedule will be 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. each weekday.

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What about construction noise during final exams?

The construction firm has been told that construction noise during final exam weeks is to be minimized to the maximum extent possible.  The firm will be given the exam schedule in advance and asked to plan accordingly.  While it will be impossible to eliminate all construction noise, every effort will be made to keep the noise down during exams.

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How long will this project take?

The tentative completion date for construction is March 2014.

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How will this project affect the Library’s schedule?

The Library will be open for its regular hours throughout the entire project.

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How will this project affect campus walk?

The new building will be located on campus walk, next to the Library. It will cross over campus walk and will connect to the Library on one floor.  This location requires that a portion of campus walk be closed during construction in order to ensure everyone’s safety.  A temporary walkway around the construction location will be built.  It will take pedestrians behind the Library and will connect back to campus walk on the Woodard Campus Center side of the Library.

Signs will be provided to assist everyone in locating the temporary walking routes around the construction site.  An accessible route for persons requiring mobility assistance will be provided and will be clearly marked.

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Will the mulched walkway that cuts over from campus walk to College Avenue (the walk that goes in between Pollard Hall and the Jepson Science Center) be affected by this project?

Safety concerns require that pedestrian traffic be moved away from the mulch path and towards routes that will decrease the risk of accidents occurring as people walk through the general area of construction.  The mulch path will be closed while the project is under construction.  Walking traffic will be routed down the College sidewalk and then through the Jepson Science Center parking lot and around the side of the building (using the existing sidewalks).  This route is necessary in order to best ensure everyone’s safety.  NOTE — this is a change from the original plan. View map of the detour.

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How will the road from Jepson around to the back of the Library and duPont, Pollard, and Melchers Halls be affected during construction?

The road will remain open throughout the project, although there may be times when traffic will have to be stopped temporarily due to particular construction activities.  Also, at times, traffic on the road might be restricted to one lane because of necessary underground work – at these times, a construction company flag person will direct traffic.

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How will access to the Fitness Center, Jepson Science Center, Alvey Hall, and Arrington Hall be affected by the construction?

Access to the entrances to Fitness Center, Jepson, and Alvey will be unaffected by the construction.  For Arrington Hall, entry to and from the building will be by the rear doors only.  The front entrance to Arrington will need to be blocked off.

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What about this temporary construction road?

In order for larger trucks to access the construction site, a temporary road needs to be built in the open space between Jepson Science Center and Pollard Hall.  When the project ends, the road will be removed and area will be restored.  Putting in this road means that construction trucks will not have to travel through the Jepson parking lot during the main phase of construction.

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What arrangements will be made regarding truck and equipment traffic to the job site?

All trucks will be requested to approach the site using Route 1.  Those coming from the South will be routed down Powhatan Street, across College onto the construction road.  Trucks coming from the North will turn onto College Ave and then into the road.  All traffic will leave via College Ave to Route 1. During the early work, most of the traffic will be equipment coming to the site or dump trucks.  After groundbreaking in June, 18-wheelers will be coming in with large sections of steel and other materials.  The construction company  will have flag bearers on College Avenue to direct traffic anytime the 18-wheel trucks are coming to the job site.

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How will parking be affected?

The easiest way to answer this question is by looking at construction phases.

In the “early phase” of the construction project (from roughly the end of April to the end of June), two parking spots behind the Library and four spots behind Pollard Hall will be lost.  Also, the handicapped spaces near Jepson Hall will be closed – this area is being enlarged from the current two handicapped spaces to a total of seven spaces.  These new spaces will be open after June 2012.  There might be a need to temporarily eliminate one space in the Jepson lot to facilitate some truck traffic while the temporary construction road is built.  (It is not entirely clear if this will be required at this point.)

During the main construction phase (late June 2012 to March 2014), the two spots behind the Library and the four spots behind Pollard Hall will still be unavailable. Also, once the temporary construction road is opened, 2-3 spots on College Avenue (at the point where the road will enter College Avenue) will be temporarily lost.  The handicapped spots by Jepson will be open (and increased from the current 2 to 7 spaces).

After the project is finished, the four lost spots behind Pollard will be returned.  One of the two lost spots behind the Library will be returned to service.  The 2-3 spots on College Avenue will be restored.

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When will the new building open?

The current plan is to begin occupying the building during the 2014 summer.  It will take some time to move in the different units that will be relocating to the building – these moves will be done in such a way as to minimize inconvenience and interruption of services as offices and staff relocate.  By the start of the fall semester 2014, the building will be in full service.

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