March 10, 2004  
Volume 97, Issue 83  

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Paper forced from office

By Allison Buchan-Terrell
Gazette Staff

After 40 years in the same office, Wilfrid Laurier University’s student newspaper The Cord is being forced out in favour of increased lounge space in the student union building.

The WLU Students’ Union had planned two phases of renovations in the Fred Nichols Campus Centre: the first phase beginning this summer with the reallocation of space for other services, including a new leadership centre, and the second to renovate the third floor to make it more accessible for students to relax and study, said Dan Herman, president of the WLUSU.

“[The Cord] signed a lease extension in April 2002 understanding that they were no longer a tenant after that,” Herman said.

“There was no consultation with students; the president took arbitrary action,” said Wilbur McLean, Editor-in-Chief of The Cord.

Herman explained the full renovation is a year away and the WLUSU is conducting focus groups so they can go to an architect in order to adequately account for students’ needs.

Laurier’s assistant VP-physical resources, Ron Dupuis, said the university had a SuperBuild project in the works with a new building planned nearby, which The Cord wanted a new office in. The plans for the new building have been put on hold until the financial situation improves. The temporary cancellation of these plans has forced The Cord to seek alternative arrangements.

“We will be going into the housing office,” McLean said, noting the move reduced office space from 1,600 sq. feet to 900.

Dupuis confirmed that The Cord will be occupying the former housing office, which is in a central location on campus.

“If the university were to somehow take away this offer, we would go into someone’s basement,” McLean responded when asked if The Cord had a contingency plan.

The new office will require renovations to accommodate the publishing aspect of The Cord,but staff are not sure where the funding will come from, he said.



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