Stanley Hall to feature new bathrooms


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The ongoing Stanley Hall renovations mark the final step in an effort to modernize dormitory bathrooms on campus stretching back 15 years, but this is only the first of three summers the current project will take to complete.

Students living on floors featuring the new facilities will have access to several small rooms that have their own toilet, shower, and deadbolt.

The remaining floors will have a row of shower stalls in one room and a row of toilet stalls next door.

“When that happened in Slater … students from the lower floors went up there to use the restrooms,” said Von Stange, the director of University of Iowa Housing and Dining. “We ultimately had to key the restrooms to those floors so that nobody else could use them because they were finding time delays.”

The state Board of Regents authorized almost $6.8 million for the project, which allows for costs outside the construction bid such as design fees, testing, furniture, and unforeseen contingencies, said Rod Lehnertz, the director of planning, design, and construction for UI Facilities Management.

Doug Wall — project manager from the Cedar Rapids-based Unzeitig Construction Co., which won the multiphase project with a bid just under $4.6 million — said the company will finish remodeling the bathrooms, updating the vanities, and replacing the water and waste pipes on the top three floors of the residence hall by the end of July.

“You only get the summers to do this project, so it’s pretty intense,” he said.

Stange said UI officials coordinate the use of the residence halls during the summer, because students and camp attendees are occupants during that time.

“We have, basically, a 10-week window in order to make sure that projects get done,” he said.

Wall said about $2 million was spent to replace the old galvanized pipes with new copper pipes, and roughly $500,000 was for electrical work. The rest of the money was to tile and finish the bathrooms and modify the student rooms.

Construction workers will also expand the bathroom footprint into some space formerly occupied by student rooms, Stange said.

The last dorms to see modifications — Daum and Slater — feature the new private bathrooms. Currier, Hillcrest, Burge, Rienow, and Quadrangle have modernized bathrooms, but not private rooms, which Stange said have been a recent trend.

“We’re not going to renovate a perfectly good restroom to make it more private,” he said, citing budgetary concerns.

As to who gets the coveted restrooms, Stange said the top two floors of Stanley Hall are usually set aside for REACH, Realizing Educational and Career Hopes, a program for students with intellectual and cognitive disabilities.

As to floor eight, he said he wasn’t sure if it was going to be coded male or a female yet, but with the new bathrooms, it could always be co-ed.

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