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18th Avenue construction set to continue through fall

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Eighteenth Avenue undergoes construction on August 22 in Columbus, Ohio. Photo Credit: Michael Huson / Campus Editor

Eighteenth Avenue undergoes construction on August 22 in Columbus, Ohio. Photo Credit: Michael Huson / Campus Editor

Students may find themselves having to use some strategy this semester while traveling through central campus.

Construction on West 18th Avenue, which began last spring, is expected to continue through December, Justin Moss, spokesman for Administration and Planning, said in an email.

The fenced-off construction zone stretches from College Road to Magruder Road.

That zone will continue to be closed to vehicular traffic, but existing walkways, running along portions of 18th Avenue, will be open to pedestrians, as will two walkways near the 18th Avenue Library, which allow pedestrians to cross the road.

The construction on 18th Avenue began in May 2015.

Construction on College Road, Magruder Road and the Stillman Hall parking lot has been completed, and all three sites are now open.

The 18th Avenue construction, part of an $8.2 million project to extend chilled water lines from the East Regional Chilled Water Plant, will allow underground tunnels to reach from College Road to Celeste Laboratory.

The tunnels will provide chilled water for air conditioning to Celeste, McPherson, Newman Wolfrom and Evans laboratories, Moss said.

Extending the flow of chilled water through the ERCWP is a step in stride with aspects of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan concerning energy use. The plant aims to increase sustainability and reduce energy consumption on campus by providing redundant cooling capacity, according to a 2012 document from OSU Facilities Operations and Development.

Sean Whitehurst, a second-year in computer science and engineering, said he feels the construction on 18th Avenue is bearable, and the existing and temporary walkways should handle student foot traffic as fall semester gets underway.

“I think it’s kind of a good thing,” he said. “It can’t really hurt that they’re improving things, but it does kind of stink that there’s always construction going on.”

Whitehurst said he made a wrong turn on his first trip toward the construction after summer break, but doesn’t think the project will be a great inconvenience for most students.

“They’re doing construction for a reason, so it will be worth it in the end,” he said.

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