Coping With the Construction

Published: April 20, 2011

Jackhammers over the library. Fifteen-minute-long elevator lines. Half our usual Plaza space. Right now, Fordham students are bearing the brunt of a host of changes meant to improve our experiences and our school’s image as a whole. As reported in Christina Frasca’s article “Unreliable Elevators Cause Concern” and Laura Chang’s article “Quinn, Visual Arts Affected by Noise,” not everyone is pleased with the changes going on around us. From the noise of the new law school’s construction to the inconvenience of McMahon Hall’s elevator modernization, there’s a lot to complain about around campus.

 As much as we at the Observer love to zero in on contentious issues and try to offer solutions in our editorials, sometimes there are problems that we, as students, can’t really do much to solve. Yes, it’s annoying to have to wait in line to get up to your apartment. Yes, it’s a headache that parts of the library and the visual arts complex are almost unusable at times because of the construction noise. Yes, it’s true that these disruptive projects would be better reserved for the summer, when there are fewer students on campus. But no matter how you look at it, a renovation project as large-scale as Fordham’s is going to inconvenience some people, no matter where and when it takes place.

 Perhaps we could rail against the expansion project as a whole, but in reality, such anger would produce little or no change. The money has already been spent. And it’s likely that, eventually, Fordham degree-holders will benefit from the campus improvements that are testing our patience right now.

 There are always ways to make a project run more smoothly, and it’s important that we don’t stop looking for ways to streamline the process in the future. For example, in hindsight, it may not have been the best decision to close down two of McMahon’s five elevators simultaneously, for weeks on end. Maybe next time, the elevators can be serviced one at a time. Maybe the next time there’s a construction task that will create considerable disruptions in students’ study routines, it can wait until the end of the semester. These are valid suggestions and we hope that Fordham’s administration will take them into account. But for the most part, when it comes to construction, students are going to have to grin and bear it (or just bear it).

 We at Fordham are a resilient bunch. We juggle classes, internships, club meetings, commutes, Ram Van rides and whatever else contributes to the chaos of our lives. We can handle the noise and the backed-up elevators even if, like true New Yorkers, we grumble about it all the way. But rather than harping on annoyances that probably won’t change this semester, the Observer would like to remind everyone that summer is fast approaching and soon, the migraines you got while browsing the reference section will be a distant memory. Unless, of course, you’re staying for the summer session—in which case, well, we’re sorry.