A welcome inconvenience?

Resident or commuter students alike cannot help but notice the construction that has been going on around the staircase that leads to the Residence Village since the semester began. The St. Vincent Stairs, which were built just four years ago, provide a vital time-saving path for resident students between class and their dorms. The fact that the stairs are closed off now causes major inconveniences for students, forcing them to leave their rooms earlier in order to get to class on time.

Many wonder why the stairs need such major construction if they are so new. According to Fidelis Oziegbe of St. John’s University’s Design Department, the wrong materials were used when the stairs were first built four years ago. The original concrete stairs became brittle and started to deteriorate, which was apparent late last winter when portions of the staircase became loose and chipped, causing potential safety hazards for students. The stairs are now being built using solid granite stone.

It has been confirmed that St. John’s is filing a lawsuit against the company that originally built the St. Vincent Stairs, although the University does not comment on impending litigation.

Originally, the lawsuit was just a rumor fueled presumably by St. John’s decision to use a different company this time around and also because the original construction deteriorated so quickly.

It is good to see St. John’s taking action against something that posed safety hazards for students. We should be getting our money’s worth when it comes to construction on campus, especially a vital staircase.

The only problem, however, is that the University did not finish construction on the new staircase when it said it would. Oziegbe had claimed that the stairs would be finished on September 21, but now, as of September 26, the construction has not stopped.

This one inconvenience aside, the construction should be, overall, a positive change to our campus. So, although the renovation is annoying, it is bearable simply because it is temporary and will produce a longer lasting and much safer staircase.