The project to replace the Swan Building’s fourth floor EPDM (ethylene-propylene-diene monomer) roofing system began on Tuesday.
According to a university wide notice, the project was granted to J&L Roofing. The contractors will begin work on the north and south sides of the Swan building adjacent to fifth floor classroom and corridor spaces.
The release noted the estimated duration of the project would take 30 days, depending on how the weather cooperates.
“Problems with the existing membrane system were encountered 5 years ago. Funding was not readily available to replace the roofing system at that time, so we made temporary repairs to buy some time,” said Mark Eichenberg, director of the physical plant.
Eichenberg said the decision to proceed with the project was made in mid-June.
There will be limited access to the site of the project as it continues. A contractor will be utilizing the sidewalk corridor between the Swan Welding Labs and the National Elastomers Center.
“The existing roofing system is an EPDM system held in place with stone ballast material. Ballasted roofing systems are one of the least expensive systems available, but are extremely difficult to maintain; especially when attempting to located sources of water infiltration,” said Eichenberg.
Due to safety purposes, the sidewalk corridor between the Swan Welding Labs and National Elastomers center will be closed to pedestrians during times of construction.
Eichenberg said the new system that will be installed is a fully adhered EPDM system with redundancy built into seams, at curbs and other areas that generally experience pre-mature failure.
Pedestrians will be encouraged to take the pathway of from Lot 2 will be along Ives Street and at the east side of the Swan Building or between Johnson Hall and the National Elastomers Center.
In addition, work on the south fourth floor roof section will impact use of the center set of access doors from the main building and access to the Swan welding lab via the corridor sidewalk.
Also, contractors will be using motorized lifts along a column line of the building to remove demolition materials and placement of new products.
Barricades will set at the sidewalk corridor entrance, north of the Swan Welding Lab Entrance and the east/west ends of the south elevation walkway.
There will still be access to the Swan building via the three main building stairwell entrances and Ives Street ramp. Signs will be posted at each building entry location affected by construction work.
The Physical Plant and Contractors urge students, faculty and staff to take safety into consideration during the time of the project. n