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Ohio State students excited to walk South Oval again

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The South Oval opened this summer after almost three years of construction due to the installation of geothermal wells. Credit: Shelby Lum / Photo editor

The South Oval opened this summer after almost three years of construction due to the installation of geothermal wells. Credit: Shelby Lum / Photo editor

When Ohio State’s South Oval opened this summer after almost three years of construction, some upperclassmen were happy to see the area back in use. But others were excited to see it open for the first time since their arrival on campus.

The area has been closed since November 2010 due to the installation of geothermal wells to improve the heating and cooling systems of South Campus residence halls.

Though the initial targeted completion date was September 2012, problems with the drilling method in relation to the South Oval geologic condition delayed the project end date by more than a year.

Chesapeake Geosystems, Inc., the company initially under contract for the renovation, was released from its obligations because of its ineffective methods, according to The Lantern archives. The project originally cost $10.3 million and was expected to pay for itself in about ten years, but the budget jumped to $12 million due to the delays and was completed by Bergerson-Caswell.

Some upperclassmen are glad to see the South Oval back in service, no matter the cost.

“It’s really nice to have something I missed from freshman year back for my final year at Ohio State,” said Mary McKay, a fourth-year in city and regional planning.

Others felt similarly to McKay.

“I’m excited that the South Oval has reopened. When I moved in as a freshman, the entire campus was gorgeous, but the past two years (have) been full of construction and inconvenience,” said Alexa Carbone, a fourth-year in psychology. “I’m glad that I’ll spend my last year at OSU enjoying our beautiful campus instead of avoiding it.”

Other students who came to OSU after construction had begun said they’re most looking forward to having a quicker route across campus.

“It’s easier to get to the Union from the Oval now,” said Briana Albert, a second-year in early childhood education. “Last year it was very terrible. I always wanted to be able to see it. I wanted to be able to walk across it.”

Some said they just want the construction to be completely finished.

“I’m very glad that it’s finally open,” said Dana Sadowski, a second-year in biology. “It looks really nice, besides the gates.”

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