Oatman: Elizabeth 69% complete

Kim Oatman, director of Facilities Management, said there are more than 50 workers renovating Elizabeth College. || Austin Ramsey/The News

Elizabeth College renovations are on track to be finished in time for the fall semester.

Kim Oatman, director of Facilities Management, said the construction crew has made extensive progress in the last few months.

“We have advanced from 40 percent complete to 69 percent in the last three months,” he said.

Oatman said the renovation crew are working their way from the top floor to the bottom.

New space will not be added to the residential college, but existing spaces are being renovated, Oatman said.

“The first floor will be completely renovated to include a larger lobby and a student lounge, plus accessible restrooms,” he said. “On the upper floors, two through nine, the center core areas are being completely renovated to include new accessible restrooms, showers, student lounges and laundry rooms.”

Despite the renovations to the residential college, the size of the rooms are not changing.

David Wilson, director of resident life and housing, said the changes that will be made to the building would enhance student living. Entertainment rooms, libraries and commons are nearing completion.

“Some of the main upgrades on the upper floors will be things that will make life better,” he said. “There is an upgrade to the heating and air conditioning system so that we can have heat or A/C in the building quickly.”

While the bedrooms and individual floors will see some changes, the main alterations are being made to the lobby on the first floor.

“The main physical changes will be in the first floor lobby of the building,” he said. “It has been redesigned and will hopefully create a more open and inviting feeling.”

The building will also be certified by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, an organization that verifies buildings meet expectations in areas of human environmental health.

The certification added to the renovation will drive the cost up for Elizabeth residents.

“Students requesting to live in Elizabeth will pay an additional $250 a semester,” he said.

After the construction of Lee Clark and Richmond colleges, an official pricing range was set for newer renovations.

Said Wilson: “Elizabeth will be a newly renovated building and it would not be appropriate for all housing residents to pay the total amount of debt incurred to pay for the renovation.”