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Record Lows in October Cause Concern for Campus Construction

Wednesday, Nov. 06, 2019

construction worker walking past a building under construction.

Following record-breaking temperatures for Logan last week on Monday and again on Wednesday, Utah State University construction is slowing.

On Monday, monitors at Peter Sinks, a natural sinkhole northeast of Logan, recorded temperatures of minus 35 degrees. This was the lowest October temperature in the contiguous United States since 1917. However, it was short lived; Wednesday brought a record-smashing minus 45.5 degrees.

This trend poses challenges to USU Logan campus construction.

According to Ben Berrett, the director for facilities planning, design and construction at Utah State University, there are three major projects underway: the East Parking Terrace east of the Industrial Science Building, a 400-bed residence hall to replace Mountain View Residence Hall and the IT Services Building.

The East Parking Terrace, which is currently under construction, was originally slated for completion before fall semester in 2020.

“We got a late start, and the weather is already a challenge. It could go into mid semester,” Berrett said.

“We have to be careful to protect people out there,” said Jordy Guth, the assistant director for facilities planning, design and construction.

She said the cold poses challenges to worker safety, as well as productivity. There are ways to deal with freezing temperatures, but they were not expected this early in the year.

James Nye, the vice president for business and finance, said the new parking terrace will be set up similarly to the other two on campus: pay-by-the-hour for visitors and students.

Barrett said the terrace’s construction was not in response to student complaints about parking on campus. It was on the master plan for construction at USU.

The IT Services Building is scheduled to begin construction in the spring of 2020 and the residence hall in the summer of 2020. Both are currently in the design process.


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