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Construction Gets Up to Speed

“It’s a great day for construction!” declares President Laura Skandera Trombley on a beautiful winter morning when asked about how things are going with the Residential Life Project. President Trombley starts each day with a walk by the construction site to monitor progress and simply to enjoy the moment. Later, she will receive a daily e-mail from facilities director Larry Burik with an official update on activities at the construction site. Things are going very well, and the Project continues on-time and on-budget, with construction scheduled to be completed in April 2007—just 12 short months from now.

With the ground “officially” broken for the Residential Life Project in September, activity since then has focused on key infrastructure and site development work. For some, the site development phase may seem to move slowly as trenches are dug, pipe is laid, utility lines are installed by Edison and trenches are filled in again. In truth, the utility work is the essential precursor to all that will follow—the equivalent of a seed beginning to germinate under winter soil, ready to burst forth in the spring. Moreover, the current work is more complex because it includes the utilities needed for all three phases of the new Housing Master Plan, not just the first three residence halls. Visible construction activity, however, is now getting up to speed with the first pouring of cement footings and foundations this April.

Fundraising also continues apace—the College continues to receive gifts while we also gear up for a brick campaign to be launched on Alumni Weekend. Commitments toward the $18 million fundraising goal have now exceeded $12.9 million. In addition to individual and foundation giving, Pitzer is soliciting corporate gifts for the Project. Notably, Aquarius Brands, Inc., a manufacturer of drip irrigation systems based in Ontario, Calif., has recently committed an in-kind gift of its product for the Project, which will make a significant contribution toward meeting our water conservation goals for the new gardens surrounding the residence halls.

If you get excited about construction projects, don’t forget to check out the Residential Life Project Webcam at www.pitzer.edu/rlp. You will also notice that we have expanded the related web pages, adding new architectural renderings and floorplans.

Get online and get up to speed on the Residential Life Project!

— Richard Chute ’84