Photo: Crews update the landscaping in front of the Administration building.
It’s another busy year for the TXWES facilities team and campus improvement projects. Here’s a quick recap from Brian Franks, executive director of campus facilities and operations, on the important projects underway, including essential behind-the-scenes maintenance, updating curb appeal, and getting prepared to break ground on the new Nick and Lou Martin University Center.
Texas Wesleyan recently received a grant from the Sid W. Richardson Foundation to improve the nearly 50-year-old Sid W. Richardson Center. Renovations will include updates to the pool, gym doors and main entryway.
Pool renovations are expected to start over winter break, while improvements to the main entrance will be seen in as little as a month. Further details about this exciting grant are coming soon.
“Renovations are moving quickly and we’re excited to start filling the vacant store space on the 3000 block of East Rosedale,” Franks said. “We’ve had a lot of interest, and we’re dedicated to finding the perfect match to benefit the campus.”
The Nick and Lou Martin University Center is expected to break ground in April 2018, and will take about a year to complete. The 44,000-square-foot building will be the most significant capital improvement project at TXWES in 100 years. It will include new student and family welcome center, food court, ballroom, bookstore, convenience store, student organization and student life offices, lounge rooms, and more.
The facilities team continues to maintain landscaping across campus and is always looking for ways to continually improve the curb appeal of our campus.
“Flooding last year caused the need for us to redo some of the landscaping in front of the Administration building,” Franks said. “We continued our trend of xeriscaping – which means we use native plants that don’t require extra watering, and help us conserve water.”
Franks says that air conditioning, plumbing, electricity and roofs are all key points of focus this year.
"These behind-the-scenes updates are all a way to prevent inconveniences," Franks said. "We are trying to be proactive rather than reactive. The University has a lot of older buildings, many of which still have the original plumbing, mechanical, and electrical systems that are beyond their period of useful life. If we schedule out these replacements now, we can ensure we are updating them at a time that doesn't interfere with classes."
West Village, Dan Waggoner, Polytechnic United Methodist Church and West Library are getting roof updates. Dan Waggoner is also having the heating and air conditioning piping replaced.
"Our best guess is that the piping that is being replaced dates back to the original HVAC system from the 40’s or 50’s,” Frank said. "Several of the buildings on campus are over 100 years old."
All PUMC electrical breakers are being replaced with a more modern version, along with LED lighting being added to the sanctuary.
Lighting, gates and cameras are three main things that are in the plan to ramp up the safety on campus.
“Lighting is going to be added in parking lots, and we will continue to regularly ensure that lights are timed correctly with time changes, and are still working properly,” Franks said.
Cameras are also being added to add exterior safety, specifically surrounding the administration building and mall areas.
Due to frequent damage caused by drivers to the gates surrounding the residence halls, a 30-inch stop sign with LED lights is being added to ensure all drivers are aware of the appropriate distance needed for the gates to open and close.
“We need our residents to slow down when they are coming in and out of the electric gates. The frequent damages are costly and avoidable,” Franks said.
Do you have a campus improvement idea? Fill out the Campus Improvement Idea Form here.