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Lounge redesign to continue after flood

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Quinn Western Plans to remodel the Laptop Lounge are still brewing even after a pipe burst from the coffee machine on the first floor of Meriam Library.

Quinn Western
Plans to remodel the Laptop Lounge are still brewing even after a pipe burst from the coffee machine on the first floor of Meriam Library.

A redesign of the Laptop Lounge in Meriam Library will continue without delay after it was promised to be revamped by the start of the fall semester.

Interior architecture students originally envisioned beginning construction for the project during summer break, said Kijeong Jeon, an interior architecture professor and program coordinator, in a previous Orion article.

While there was no redesign work done in the Laptop Lounge this summer, the room did get undergo an unexpected flood, however.


The flood

A plastic tube providing water to the coffee vending machine in the Laptop Lounge burst in June, flooding part of the first floor, said Joe Wills, Chico State’s director of public affairs and publications.

Water went below the first floor into the Technology and Learning Program offices, displacing the occupants for a few days, Wills said.

Carpet was replaced around the vending machine and the vendor was called for required maintenance.

“Because it’s their equipment the responsibility lies with the vendor,” Wills said.

The flood cost roughly $80,000 in damage, he said.

“That area is not back to where it was and then of course there is a pending redesign,” Wills said.


The makeover

Stephanie Dolim, a senior interior architecture major, is one of the students redesigning the Laptop Lounge.

“The construction permits weren’t approved in time to achieve the goal of completing the project over summer,” Dolim wrote in an email to The Orion.

The students completed their design during the spring, and it takes several months for the campus to complete the final construction documents, gain state approval and put the project out to bid, wrote Lorraine Hoffman, vice president for business and finance, in an email to The Orion.

“So, I knew that the project would not be able to move into construction until winter break,” Hoffman wrote.

When given this project, the group of student designers were instructed to come up with ideas as if they had little to no money for a budget, Dolim wrote. The budget has yet to be finalized.

The idea to refresh the drab study area was envisioned by Belle Wei, the provost and vice president for academic affairs. She pictured it as an alternative place for students to congregate and get a hands-on learning experience instead of going out and partying.

“Students design for students,” Wei said. “This is a part of their learning and training to be professionals.”


The Orion can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_news on Twitter.

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Lounge redesign to continue after flood