April 13, 2002
Adrienne Gregory, Hullabaloo Contributing Writer
Architecture students have been removing stones and shoveling dirt in the patio area between Norman Mayer and Tilton Halls these past five days as part of Architecture Week. The project includes the renovation and redesign of the entire area, which was previously underdeveloped and had serious drainage issues. In the past, Architecture Week at Tulane has meant large, impressive projects stretched across the academic quad that baffled the Tulane community.
This year, however, the Architecture School has chosen to undertake a project that works with the University. Students still receive expert advice from architects not affiliated with Tulane and a positive educational experience, but the project this year will be a permanent fixture on campus .
"This year we're doing something really substantial to help the University," senior Shawn Pitz, co-coordinator of Architecture Week, said.
The project, which is being aided by David Guthrie from Rice University and Randy Brown, a practicing architect from Nebraska, should near completion Friday afternoon. Students began the work by pulling up the top layer of concrete and laying down a new, more level patio. The new patio will be composed of bricks, or pavers, donated by the University. The students also plan to plant a bamboo screen around the location to create an area more conducive to studying.
To create the screen they will plant bamboo shoots that extend about five feet along the Mayer side and along the back to block the view of the access street from campus. The project will not only beautify the landscape, but it will also include some minor work to improve drainage.
"It's really a shame that the area that serves as the access point to the patio is where the most flooding occurs," Pitz said. "We're not going to be able to solve any major drainage problems, but we think we can do better."
The students hope to control the area as much as possible, possibly by channeling the water toward the road, where there is less student traffic. In addition, the architecture students hope to obtain new furniture for the patio area once it is completed. When Architecture Week culminates Friday, students will be able see to the project in a form that will closely resemble its final state.
Any additions and other improvements will carry over to next year's Architecture Week. Students on campus seemed to appreciate and support the new endeavor by the Architecture School.
"There's a lot of stuff that this school needs fixed up I like it. I sit out here everyday after class. It will be nice for it not to be muddy anymore," Newcomb freshman Ariel Bowman said.
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