Construction to Bring Noise, Price Cut to Malcolm

Joe Riley ’17, Staff Writer

Students living in Malcolm Hall next year will receive a 10 percent discount on their rooming fees in the spring semester, due to noise disturbances that are expected to arise from nearby construction on a new dorm.

Construction for a new residence hall along West High Street between Mooreland Avenue and Conway Street is set to begin in the spring of 2017. The new residence hall will add 38,000 square feet of living space to the Dickinson campus and will contain 129 beds in a mix of single rooms and double rooms, according to Kristen Kostecky, associate vice president of Facilities,

The plans are currently being finalized and construction will be completed in time for a fall 2018 opening date, according to Kostecky.

Due to the noise disturbances anticipated from the construction of the new dorm, Residence Life has announced that students living in Malcolm Hall will receive a 10 percent discount during the whole period of construction, which is expected to last from spring 2017 through spring 2018. Angie Harris, director of Residence Life, said that a housing discount like this may be unprecedented in college history.

“I do not know if this has been done in the past, but… [we are doing it next spring] because of the very close proximity of the construction to Malcolm,” Harris said.

Kostecky said that Residential Life and Facilities could not afford to close Malcolm during construction because of the college’s already strained housing supply.

As the first-year class size continues to grow, there is a desire to divest from the many properties Dickinson leases out to students each year, to cope with less and less available campus housing.

“A new dorm also provides potential swing space for future renovations in existing dorms,” Kostecky explained, indicating a desire by Dickinson to improve current residence halls.

This new dorm will be designated for upperclassmen, and is expected to cost around $18.5 million under the current design. Both the ROTC house and ROTC offices located at 450 West High Street will be demolished to make room for this dorm. Kostecky said that they are looking for alternate locations for ROTC currently, but nothing has been finalized yet.

The design for the new residence hall was drawn up with sustainable design practices in mind, and Kostecky hopes the new residence hall will be given LEED Platinum Status. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is a green building certification program developed by the nonprofit U.S. Green Building Council to encourage environmentally responsible construction and operation of buildings, homes and neighborhoods. Currently, Dickinson has five LEED Gold certified buildings on campus, including the Treehouse, Althouse Hall and the Durden Athletic Center.

The new dorm will make use of occupancy sensors and a central plan for heating and cooling, says Kostecky, which will cut down on energy usage and make the building more energy efficient.

The building is also being designed as a tight envelope, which refers to the physical separator between the inside of the building and the outside. A tighter envelope cuts down on air, water and heat leakage, which in turn cuts down on both energy costs and the energy needed to heat and cool the building.

The design of the new residence hall is the latest in Dickinson’s commitment to have all construction or renovation projects meet at least LEED Silver Status. Since adopting this policy, all projects have met earned LEED Gold Status, according to Dickinson’s website.