Winter weather fails to faze MU construction projects

There are five campus construction projects in progress.

Despite harsh winter weather conditions in Columbia, all of MU’s construction projects are on pace to be ready for their original completion dates, Campus Facilities spokeswoman Karlan Seville said.

There are five ongoing construction projects for buildings on the MU campus and two projects at MU Health Care facilities, according to the Campus Facilities website.

Of these projects, only the renovations of Switzler and Tate halls are slated to finish before the end of the spring 2011 semester. Seville said both projects are on track for completion during the first week of May.

Although the campus-wide closures shut down construction on Feb. 1 and Feb. 2, workers were back on the job by the following Thursday.

“Although they did not work every day during the week of the big snowstorm, they are not worried about finishing on time,” Seville said.

Both halls will be subject to inspection by MU officials before re-opening.

Other campus projects, including renovations of Gillett Hall and upgrades to MU’s power plant, will also finish on time, due to weather considerations built into production schedules, Seville said.

The Patient Care Tower, an addition to the north side of University Hospital, remains on schedule despite the high snowfall totals.

Seville also said the $203 million project is still slated to finish in spring 2013, due to the extra days built into the construction schedule.

“We have a 30-month construction schedule, so built into that schedule are days off for major weather events,” MU Health Care spokesman Matt Splett said.

Although there have been no major setbacks, the winter weather has added additional difficulties to those working on the project.

“The harsh winter weather has presented some challenges for our construction crews, who have had to deal with frigid temperatures and record snowfalls,” Splett said.

The snowfall total from this winter is the fourth highest on record for Columbia. The winter included 17.7 inches of snow falling in almost blizzard-like conditions on Feb. 1 that caused campus to shut down for three days, giving MU its first snow day since 2006.

MU’s costs for snowfall cleanup are projected at $250,000, and Columbia and Boone County spent a record $1.7 million on snow cleanup.

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