The refurnishing of the Haley Center has begun with test furniture already in place in the lobby.
“We are, right now on the SGA side, gaining feedback from students about the test furniture,” said Liberal Arts Sen. Ken Ward. “They’re going to use that to kind of determine what type of new benches and seating arrangements students want down there.”
The test furniture currently in place is surplus furniture that Auburn’s facilities management provided. The project was first proposed by the College of Liberal Arts’ Student Council, and Student Affairs has also had interest in reviving the Haley Center.
“We have to work with the people who work in that space,” professor Robin Jaffe. “We want to do it right, make it a nicer place and make it inviting because Haley Center has always been this big thing in the middle that no one wants to go to.”
Jaffe is the Facilities/Administration Project Advisor for the College of Liberal Arts and is the Production Manager and Faculty Technical Director for the Department of Theatre.
“Right now [Facilities Management] is working on over 500 projects,” Jaffe said. “it’s not just Haley center, buildings all over campus need to be renovated.”
Over the winter break, construction is scheduled to begin on the two restrooms on the lobby floor of Haley. Work is expected to continue into February, and costs will be around $200,000.
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“We would really like this process to move as quickly as possible, but we know when working with a budget how things can be,” Ward said.
The College of Liberal Arts Dean Joseph Aistrup said that the College of Liberal Arts will be replacing the metal benches currently in place with “more comfortable seating for studying and relaxing” and will be putting up monitors in the lobby for displaying information and notices.
Plans are also being made to add more seating to the courtyards at Haley.
Tables with solar-powered phone chargers like those at Chicken Salad Chick are soon going to be placed there.
“I mean there wasn’t any tables for Einstein,” Jaffe said. “It’s just the idea that you go get your coffee or your food, and you have to go sit on the floor just seems really kind of weird.”
Jaffe said that classrooms in Haley are going to be renovated in the near future to accommodate for Auburn’s department of mathematics moving into Haley when Parker Hall is torn down, and some classrooms will be converted into office space to accommodate this change.
“They’ve got to knock down Parker and Allison, but they’ve got to move people out of there before they do that,” Jaffe said.
After some renovations are made in the basement of Haley, Student Counseling Services is planning to move into the basement of Haley, and several other basement rooms are going to be repurposed for office space for various departments.
“Everyone keeps thinking that Haley Center is going to be knocked down, but you know, it’s just too much of a building to just throw it away, and especially since it’s in the center of campus,” Jaffe said. “Rather than throwing everything away, and knocking down the building like they did the Georgia Dome, they’re going to work about re-purposing things.”
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