By Mallory Sherwood, Managing Editor
More than two weeks have passed since the residents of Barret Hall moved into their newly constructed residence hall Aug. 20, as scheduled, despite beliefs that it would not be completed because of heavy rains in the weeks before.
Now the women are settled in rooms, which are set up into pods, have made friends with the six other girls they share it with and are used to the rumbling sound of dump trucks and the crack of concrete as it is destroyed, as construction crews continue to complete the landscape of Barret Hall.
Lauren Oglesby, sophomore biology major from Abilene and Barret Hall resident, said she is used to the noise and doesn’t mind.
“This, among other things, are mere adjustments we have had to make considering how hard these men have worked to complete the hall on time,” Oglesby said.
Oglesby was prepared, like others, for the residence hall to be incomplete by the time school started. She said she wasn’t panicked that it might not be ready, but she had a back-up plan to live at home if she had to.
Since last spring, Oglesby said she had been looking forward to living in the new residence hall.
“It is an exciting thing to get to live in a new dorm,” Oglesby said. “It is a rare opportunity that almost no one gets to experience. Since this dorm is set up so different, we are the happy lab rats.”
Barret Hall, although livable, still has a few things to be completed.
Dr. Mimi Barnard, director of Residence Life Education and Housing and assistant professor of English, said the common rooms still needed to be decorated with artwork, end tables, lamps and bulletin boards before the rooms feel like home.
As of now, the rooms include couches and oversized chairs in four different colors, a flat-screen TV and DVD player.
“As soon as it comes in, and I get a chance, I will be over there hanging up our artwork, so it will feel like a home,” Barnard said.
Other items on the to-do list are to landscape the perimeter, finish the coffee shop/classroom and to the complete resident director’s office.
Construction crews are working to complete everything and have said it will be done by Homecoming.
“I can just see alumni and students sipping on lattes and meeting old friends as they stand on Campus Court watching the Homecoming parade,” Barnard said.
Another factor affecting Barret Hall residents is the construction outside their doors.
With the city of Abilene resurfacing Campus Court and other construction companies working on the Centennial jogging track, the area has been left in disarray causing students to search for parking and to avoid the cloud of dust.
Jimmy Ellison, ACU chief of police, said the resurfacing project should only take two weeks. He also said some parking differences will occur, with more restricted areas of parallel parking along Campus Court and an additional crosswalk for students.
“Any student crossing Campus Court, whether Barret Hall residents or not, as well as motorists, should pay attention to their surroundings to keep Campus Court as safe as possible until construction is complete,” Ellison said.