Robyn Mackenzie ('16)
For several years, Bullis Upper School students have walked the treacherous, muddy shortcut from North Hall to the Marriott Family Library. The path’s popularity spiked with the addition of lockers in the library, which caused more students to sacrifice their clean shoes for speed. After Thanksgiving break, students were excited to see builders on campus paving the shortcuts to the library. However, spirits were quickly dampened when construction caused problems in school life. The new pathways to the library will be beneficial in the end but the construction caused delays and disruption and should have taken place outside of school hours.
The purpose of the new pathways is to speed up the time it takes to walk from North Hall to the library. But for now, it does not decrease walking time and instead increases it. The construction of the paths caused the shortcut area to be roped off, forcing students to enter the building from the main entrance. Students with classes located in rooms LibA and LibB now have to walk sixty feet instead of the previous ten feet. This may not sound like a major inconvenience but students are arriving late to class because they did not factor in the few extra minutes of walking. “I forgot we had to use the main entrance” is quickly replacing the old tardy excuse of “I came from the Athletic Center”. Concrete requires a twenty-eight day cure before it reaches its maximum strength, so students should continue to expect delays when traveling to the library.
The main reason the construction of the pathways should have been done outside of school hours is the noise is extremely distracting to students. The location of the construction is between North Hall and the library which is where most classes are located. Students can head all of the loud trucks, talking, banging, and hammering through windows and doors of these buildings. One of my classes is located in LibA, which is right next to the construction site. Our class had to move because we were unable to hear our teacher talk over the sound of jackhammering. Other students have also complained about the noise when they are taking tests in the Academic Center or having study hall in the library.
The new pathways to the library will be extremely convenient in winter; however the construction has caused inconvenience and disruptions to student life. These problems could have easily been solved by choosing better times to build the paths rather than in the academic day.