One project the University has been working on since early January is a renovation of the Lowder Business Building. The building, which was constructed in 1992, houses the Auburn University College of Business.
The building was beginning to experience problems.
“There was a lack of waterproofing on the building shell,” said Ron Booth, director of Program Management and Project Execution. “Whenever we had rain, we would get water infiltrating into the building.”
The only way to fix the problem was to remove all the existing brick on the building. Once the brick was removed, a waterproof material was put on the building to prevent any leakage from occurring again.
This demolition has created noise and barriers that have inconvenienced many students.
“I love Lowder, but I was definitely affected during the re-bricking process,” said Reaves Coker, senior in finance. “The noise that the drilling caused going on right outside of a classroom was a little distracting of an environment.”
However, Coker said that he was never affected by the noise during testing or final exams.
“We have a construction manager on site, B.L. Harbor, and they’ve worked a lot with the building occupants to work around the class schedules as far as the demolition which causes some of the noise,” Booth said. “But we should be done with all of the demolition in the next couple of months.”
Demolition has already been completed on parts of the building. The brick, which had been darker than the rest of the brick on campus, is being replaced with lighter colored brick to match other buildings across campus.
“I like the fact that it looks like its going to be matching the brick of the Shelby Building and the new wellness center,” said Jim Parrish, director of MBA Admissions and Operations.
Some students also like Lowder’s new look.
“I think Lowder looks better with lighter brick like Shelby Center and the rest of campus, but I kind of liked it when it was all black (without the brick),” Coker said. “It looked like the mayor’s quarters in Gotham City.”
The inside of Lowder has also received some upgrades.
Early this summer, Lowder Lounge, a coffee shop inside Lowder, was opened. Lowder Lounge serves sandwiches, snacks and different types of pastries.
There is also a Caribou Coffee inside Lowder Lounge.
The project cost $5.5 million, and according to Booth, should be completed by March 2013. “Construction always causes some headaches but I think its going to be the best in the end,” Parrish said. “It’s going to be a great facility for our college of business students.”