When I heard that Trivette Dining Hall was being expanded, all I could think was, “Great, more construction.”
After a closer look, while the timing seems poor, the renovation will lead to a nicer facility for future students. The renovation is projected to cost $4.7 million, according to northcarolina.edu. Unfortunately, it is happening at an inconvenient time. Art Kessler, director of Food Services, explained that the renovation will include a complete reworking of the dining hall’s utilities, including the fire system, water piping and electrical workings. There will also be renovations done to both the Park Place Cafe and McAllister’s Selects.A new part of the building will be added on, which will expand the hallway into Duck Pond field by approximately 12 to 15 feet. McAllister’s will be moved from it’s current location to the other side of the hallway, placing it in the new building. The sidewalk currently running alongside the building will be expanded slightly and converted into an outdoor seating area. There are also plans to include a new entrance on Duck Pond Field.Kessler said there will also be more window space that will allow more natural lighting throughout the whole building. This will make Trivette brighter and more functional. The project will cause the Trivette Dining Hall to be closed from after Thanksgiving to the start of the 2014 fall semester. The poor timing of the construction represents the main problem with the project. Students who live on the west side of campus and enjoy the convenience of a closer dining hall will likely have to trudge through snow and the cold to the other side of campus just to get a hot meal.Kessler said he is aware of this problem, which is why construction has begun.Bulldozers are ripping up the grass and trucks are laying rock. They are beginning with the landscaping and the outside walls of the expansion so that they will be able to keep Trivette open for as long as possible. The food areas in the student union were renovated in 2011 and Central Dining Hall was renovated in 2009. After the construction is complete, it will be the last large scale Food Services renovation for a while, Kessler said. West side residents will have to be patient through a poorly timed, but ultimately beneficial project.
Opinion: ELIZABETH MCMICHAEL, Opinion writer