Newcomb patio reopens after icy week

Newcomb official says salt "degrades the surface"


The new wood patio located outside the fourth floor of Newcomb Hall — one feature of the expansive, recently concluded Newcomb Hall renovation project which spanned 32 months — recently reopened after being roped off with caution tape for a significant portion of last week.

Charles Walcott, assistant director for facility operations for Newcomb Hall, said this was “because of the ice,” and not in anticipation of further renovations.

After last week’s snow, the ensuing cold spell created icy walkways throughout the University, making conditions relatively unsafe for students commuting to class on foot.

The University typically preemptively salts Grounds as part of the protocol for dealing with the snow accumulation and ice to ensure students can walk safely. However, this was not an option for the patio, according to Charles Rush, the Newcomb Hall director of business services and operations.

“When there is snow, ice and/or freezing rain, the new patio becomes very slippery,” Rush said in an email. “Unfortunately, salt treatment degrades the decking. The space is roped off to protect patrons from slipping while on the surface.”

Rush did not say whether this will be the solution every time ice accumulates, or whether Newcomb Hall was looking into any long-term fixes.

Published January 27, 2014 in FP test, News

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