New look means longer routes

New+look+means+longer+routes

Photo courtesy of John Schall

An architectural rendition of what the entrance of LMC will look like after constrcution is completed, starting in December 2012 and ending Spring 2015.

Jared Thomson

Big changes are ahead for Los Medanos College. With construction on the rise, students will have limited access into the main college complex as renovations are under way. The east entrance will be inaccessible from December 2012 to spring 2015.

“The upcoming construction project involves gutting the east side of the college complex and renovating two floors resulting in a centralization of all of LMC’s student services offices in one place,” said Barbara Cella, director of marketing and media design at LMC.

Students should expect a delay given the limited access and plan to arrive a bit earlier to school so they aren’t late to their classes. Parking will also be limited, which means it may be a bit chaotic on campus with the increased traffic.

“During Spring 2013, access into and out of the east side of the college complex will be very limited. There will be a narrow walkway from the outdoor quad along the side of the complex, downstairs and into the building by the planetarium on the second level,” said Cella. “Disabled students will be able to access the elevator next to the large outdoor staircase, traverse the walkway, and enter the building through the nursing department.”

LMC’s Disabled Students Programs and Services program has been a vocal aspect of the planning process to enable accessible pathways for all students during the construction.

“We’re recommending students allow more time than in previous semesters to get from the campus complex building to other parts of the campus. The pathways entering the Campus Complex Building could be busier and a little slower to travel,” said Ginny Richards, DSP&S coordinator.

The walkway that runs from Lot B to the college complex, traveling along the west side of the math building, will also be closed, and a portion of Lot B will be closed for construction crew access.

Signs and flyers will be posted to make it easier for students to navigate without finding themselves stuck in dead-end areas on campus.

The construction is the result of Bond Measure A+, voted on in 2006 by county residents.

“This bond measure also supported completed projects including renovating the athletic field, the new nursing and emergency medical training classrooms and labs, expanding Lot B, setting up the swing space for offices displaced by the Student Services renovation, and purchasing 17.5 acres where the new Brentwood Center will be built,” said Cella.

All of this construction is meant to make LMC a better and more professional school for students to attend.

“We’re looking forward to our newly remodeled and expanded student services offices… This area will be more cohesive, bringing all student services together to better meet program and student needs,” said Richards.

Students will have no choice but to embrace the changes.

“Parking is such an issue [at LMC],” said student DeAnna Moss. “I used to get there 45 minutes early and sit in my car. I guess I need to see if I can get a class in Brentwood.”

LMC student Pat Wilson is a bit more optimistic.

“There are probably better things they could use their money on, but any improvement is a step forward,” he said. While it will likely be frustrating for students attending LMC over the next few years, Cella urges students to consider the benefits that will result from it.

“We ask for everyone’s patience during this time of renewal for the college. It was only by dealing with construction that the college was able to build the new science and math buildings and the library, and everyone is certainly glad we have those buildings to support student success,” said Cella.

For further information about the construction status at LMC, visit www.losmedanos.edu/construction/.