September 17, 2003  
Volume 97, Issue 11  

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Beach work will go to mid-October

By Marshall Bellamy
Gazette Staff

Dave Picard/Gazette
TEN, NINE, EIGHT, SEVEN... The clock is ticking for Homecoming weekend and the newly revamped Concrete Beach is yet to be finished. Where's Bob Vila when you need him?

The uncanny observer may have noticed the Concrete Beach renovations are still not complete, but Western's favourite construction nightmare will be done soon, hopefully.

"It looks like it'll be finished Oct. 15," said Paul Tomlinson, manager of building services for the University Students' Council, adding the projected date of completion was agreed upon by physical plant at Western and Sarnia's Cope Construction, the contractor responsible for the reconstruction of the Beach.

According to Tomlinson, the delay in construction stems from difficulties from the American supplier of the roof component for the pavillion planned for the Concrete Beach.

The part for the pavillion is critical for the construction project because the structure cannot go up without the piece, Tomlinson stated, adding the piece was scheduled to arrive on Sep. 9 but supply difficulties pushed back the arrival date for the piece until today, as long as their are no difficulties at the Canada-United States border.

Tomlinson pointed out that despite the delays the construction company primarily responsible for the reconstruction project has been very cooperative in dealing with Western administration and the USC since construction began several months ago.

"Our big concern is getting the access to the beach finished," said Dave Riddell, associate VP of physical plant and capital planning at Western.

Riddell hopes access to the Beach will be significantly improved by the end of the week, noting the paths leading to the University Community Centre, the Social Science Centre and Weldon Library are of the highest priority.

"Delays with construction projects happen - unfortunately these things come up from time to time," said USC President Paul Yeoman.

Yeoman noted he hopes all the construction with the Beach will be completed as soon as possible.

The project is a joint venture between Western administration and the USC, with the USC contributing approximately $350,000 to the improvement of the Beach.

When the demolition and construction of the Concrete Beach initially began in May, Cope's on-site superintendent, Tony McKinley, anticipated the reconstruction project to be completed by mid-August.

Construction continued longer than originally anticipated as students returned to classes in September. Yeoman cited difficulties with the ambitious task of repairing the leaking roof of the lower level of the UCC that slowed construction efforts and pushed back the date of completion.

In early September, Yeoman anticipated the Beach construction to be completed by Homecoming weekend.

-with files from Dan Perry
and Shawn MacPherson



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