Lauren St.Clair/ The Phoenix News
Lauren St.Clair/ The Phoenix News

The amount of construction occurring around campus has not decreased since the start of the school year. In fact, new construction seems to be happening at all times. Currently, there is a plethora of construction occurring all over UBC Okanagan. One of the most notable areas of construction is perhaps occurring on Alumni Avenue, or directly in front of the EME building.

This construction started in late November, and is still continuing, keeping one lane closed on Alumni Avenue and keeping it closed as a through route for traffic. However, this construction was not originally scheduled to begin in November. It was supposed to begin in September and conclude in November, according to UBCO’s Road Closure and Construction Information map.

 “[the construction] supposed to begin in September and conclude in November…”

This construction is to extend the District Energy Pipes (DES) underneath Alumni Avenue. According to UBCO’s Geoexchange page, the DES system “is a system of pipes and equipment that provides heating and cooling to ten academic buildings totaling about 80,000m2.” This system uses “water source heat pumps within the academic buildings” to “take ambient temperature water and convert it to hot (45C) water and cold (7C) water, which is required to keep the buildings comfortable.” The construction taking place on Alumni Avenue is to extend this system, as it needs to be extended to allow in to handle “increased capacity in order to handle future campus expansion.”

However, this construction has been delayed from its intended November 2017 finishing date and is now estimated to be finished by February of 2018.