A pipeline for heating and air conditioning will run under Ryerson's campus.

Photo: Amy Bourne

Pipeline cuts into Pitman sleep

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By Sandie Benitah 

While Pitman Hall residents will soon be able to sleep a little more soundly, the rest of Ryerson will have to cope with construction chaos for at least a few more months.

Right now, a ditch that will eventually become part of a Ryerson-wide pipeline cuts a swath between the Rogers Communication Centre and Pitman Hall. This pipeline will let Ryerson establish its own heating system rather than depending on commercial firms.

According to construction worker Humberto Lima, this is just one leg of the pipeline. While the current chasm will be patched up within the week, Lima says there’s still a lot more work that needs to be done.

The building of a complete chilled water and stream pipeline will take about three months to complete. The pipeline is being built to provide heat and air conditioning to the new superbuildings Ryerson plans on eventually erecting.

The construction will be done in sections, Lima explains, closing parts of Gould Street a little at a time, but nonetheless causing traffic havoc during the already difficult winter months.

“We’re trying to do it in a way that won’t disrupt people too much,” Lima says.

In the meantime, life in Pitman Hall has already been disrupted. The construction has made winter even rougher for Pitman residents, depriving them of a favourite shortcut out of the cold, as well as a few hours of sleep.

Gwethal Fernando, a first-year aerospace engineering student who lived in Pitman during first semester, remembers waking up to the noise as early as 6 a.m.

“The construction in the whole area is terrible. There’s too much noise and it’s very inconvenient,” he says.

Student housing took steps to warn residents of such disruptions. Waivers were sent out explaining that there would be construction in the area and asked students to sign before they were accepted into residence.

So far, according to housing assistant Ivone Alvarez, students have been tolerant of the situation and no complaints have been made.

“The purpose of the waiver was to make students aware of the construction taking place. It didn’t take away their right to complain.”

Zak Fiddes, a first-year Civil Engineering student, is one Pitman resident who’s not complaining. He says that the construction has been more of a minor inconvenience than an obnoxious intrusion.

“If you shut your window it’s hard to hear,” he says. “Besides, I’m in engineering. I’m used to the noise.”

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