Students have had to bundle up outside and in classrooms to stay warm last week in two of the newest buildings on campus. PHOTO: Natalia Balcerzak

Students bundle up in cold classrooms

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By Sierra Bein

Ryerson staff and students have had a hard time shaking off the chills from the cold weather outside, as a number of buildings on campus have reached frigid temperatures due to a lack of heating.

A number of students have gone to class in full winter attire, after heating has been malfunctioning in the Rogers Communication Centre (RCC) and the Images Arts (IMA) building, two of Ryerson’s newest schools.

Three weeks ago, The Eyeopener published a story about heating issues in the aging Kerr Hall building, which was built in the 1960s. Now the problem has expanded to newer buildings on campus.

Students who have classes in these buildings have been feeling the dip in temperature, such as third-year photography student, Savannah Onnofray.

“I have a winter sweater on and it’s still super cold,” she said.

Onnofray has classes on the third floor of the IMA building.

She said that the offices are much warmer than the classrooms, where she constantly feels cold even after bundling up.

“When you first get into the room it’s OK. As you continue to sit in it, it feels as if there’s a huge draft,” she said.

Other students in the IMA building have similar feelings.

“I don’t think the heat is on,” said Derrick Lee, a third-year engineering student.

“This is an ongoing issue and I’d like this to be fixed as soon as possible.” Fourth-year photography student, Terence Reeves said that he has spoken to three of his professors and that they have gone on to contact Campus Facilities and Sustainability (CFS).

“Students are wearing hats and scarves while listening to the lecture,” Reeves said. “Climate has been an issue since the building opened. We didn’t have air conditioning when I was there in the summer, we had portable ACs.” The IMA building opened in September 2012.

Although it has been around longer, students in the RCC building are also being left in the cold.

“Right now I am on my way to pick up a coffee because I’ve been shivering uncontrollably my entire class,” said Katie O’Toole, a first-year journalism student.

“People in this building have to make conscious effort to dress warm if they have class here, which is ridiculous.” Julia Hanigsberg, vice-president of administration and finance, said that CFS have completed an investigation, but that there are no issues with the heating.

She has talked to the chairs of the schools and said that there are no issues.

“There was a complaint with regards to RCC being too hot,” Hanigsberg said via email. CFS is addressing that issue by replacing a steam valve this week Thursday.

This year, Toronto has faced harsh winter conditions due to a polar vortex wind chill that hit during the month of January and has resulted in the city recieving more than 30 extreme cold warnings from Environment Canada.

Students are urged to contact CFS if they experience any issues, so that it can be addressed as soon as possible.

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