Students accustomed to walking through Prospect Gardens on their way to classes or the 'Street' have had to alter their course this week in response to construction work.
According to Jim Consolloy, head of grounds maintenance, a bluestone terrace, which will be part of the walkway systems leading to the new campus center, is being installed behind Prospect House. Work on the terrace will last approximately two weeks, Consolloy said.
In addition to the terrace, a new system of entrances to the Gardens is being created. According to Director of Physical Planning Jon Hlafter '61, there are currently four access points to the gardens.
Only the entrance between the Architecture and Woolworth buildings is marked by a gateway. Other pathway entrances, such as the pathway from 1879 Arch and the southeast and southwest corners, exist without official gateways. Hlafter said construction workers will install gateways at the latter three entrances to the gardens during the summer.
"We'll be redoing the area from all four corners," Consolloy said.
Hlafter said the new entrances will not inhibit the ability of pedestrians to use Prospect Gardens as a shortcut through campus. The new gates, he said, will be more formal markings of access points to the gardens.
Plans for the new entrances to Prospect Gardens were developed by Machado and Silvetti, a Boston architecture firm, Consolloy said. All other aspects of the construction are being completed by the University's engineering department, he added.
The construction of the bluestone terrace will also improve pedestrian access both to the gardens and to the new campus center being constructed behind them, Consolloy said. Hlafter explained that the area is currently covered by gravel, which makes it difficult to clear snow. Installing stone will facilitate such clean up, prevent the pathways from becoming muddy and prohibit gravel from being pushed into the nearby flowerbeds, he explained.
Changes to the area will help tie in the gardens to the Woolworth building and will improve access to the campus center from the upper half of campus, Consolloy explained.
According to Consolloy, work on Prospect Gardens had to be started during the academic year because the summer construction schedule is already very busy. Work in the area will resume after Reunions, Consolloy said.
Despite the surrounding construction, access to Prospect House will only be interrupted for a brief period during the summer, Consolloy said. Though such work will last approximately two weeks, Consolloy said it will be interrupted occasionally to accommodate wedding receptions and other events that will be held at Prospect House, he explained.