Colorado State Opens Two More Buildings, Finishes Boxing Water-Damaged Books at Morgan Library

Post-flood demolition and cleanup continues to progress at Colorado State University as two buildings hardest hit by the July 28 flood re-opened Wednesday.

University administrators said Eddy Hall and the Education Building are now open with limited access. Because the lower level of both buildings were flooded, access is restricted to the upper floors. Faculty and staff with offices in the lower levels of these buildings have been relocated to temporary spaces elsewhere on campus.

Most entrances and exits are open, but it is recommended that faculty, staff and students use the east entrance to Eddy Hall and the south, main entrance to the Education Building. The southwest stairwell in Eddy Hall is closed, as is the northwest entrance-area in the Education Building, to accommodate construction.

Six buildings on campus, including the Morgan Library and Lory Student Center, remain closed as crews continue cleanup.

Prior to opening the buildings, officials from the university’s facilities and environmental health departments conducted both safety and environmental inspections as well as structural assessments. Neither Eddy Hall or the Education Building–or any other building that incurred flooding–has structural damage.

In other developments Wednesday:

  • Crews expect to complete loading the remaining 5,000 boxes of books from the Morgan Library tonight and ship them to freezer space Thursday morning. In all, between 60,000 and 70,000 boxes were filled with more than 450,000 monographs, bound journals and other volumes damaged by water. The books were taken to freezer storage and will be shipped to Fort Worth, Texas, to undergo a restoration process known as freeze-drying. Some of those books are already in Fort Worth awaiting a thorough cleaning before they are restored.
  • Power has been partially restored in the Lory Student Center, which has not had electricity since the flood two weeks ago. In the days since the flood, electrical crews have inspected all of the cables serving power to the building, restored blown fuses and cleaned the transformer, said Martha Blood, student center director. Power is now available in the east addition, the south hallways on both levels and central portions of the building. Blood expects power will be fully restored by the end of the week so that work can soon begin on restoring food and catering services. "I’m so encouraged by the progress that has been made," Blood said of the recovery efforts. In addition, all of the debris has been removed from the lower level of the student center and Blood hopes to have a plan in place to begin remodeling and repairs in September. Once the plan has been drafted, Blood said the campus community will be invited to give input on the design and configuration of the renovated space.
  • The University Bookstore’s temporary location in the east addition of the Lory Student Center is completed and some textbooks for fall semester have already been stocked. Approximately 95 percent of the books needed for fall classes have been ordered and are expected to arrive when fall semester begins Aug. 25.
  • The university’s flood update line will no longer operate during weekends but will remain open from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The number is 1-888-556-3475. The flood volunteer hotline also is still open at (970) 491-7765.
  • The university’s Office of the Provost is conducting personal interviews with the estimated 300 faculty, staff and students who lost items in the flood. The purpose of the interviews is to obtain a complete and accurate inventory of both university and personal property damaged or destroyed by the floods in order to maximize reimbursement by insurance or other means, said Alicia Cook, interim vice provost.

"The loss to faculty, staff and students was tremendous," Cook said. "We want to make sure all of that loss is documented in personal interviews with those who are affected so we can move forward with recovery efforts as quickly as possible."

A team of a eight faculty, counselors and administrators will conduct the interviews through Aug. 20 on campus. Affected faculty, staff and students with questions may call the Provost’s office at (970) 491-6614.