Cold showers for Medical Towers

By By Natalie Hale and By Natalie Hale

By Natalie Hale

For the past two weeks, hot water has been non-existent for residents of the Medical Towers. Residents have been waiting while the buildings’ 1,000-gallon boilers were being replaced.However, one resident of the Medical Towers had it a little more difficult than the rest. “Having a baby during this made it really inconvenient; we showered at the Field House and boiled water to wash dishes,” said Reagan Godfrey, a resident assistant of the North Tower. “My husband and I dealt with it, and I showered at my mom’s house and we used paper plates.”There are 1,115 units in the Medical Towers, and it is inhabited year round. Rick James, director of University Student Apartments, said it was nearly impossible to determine a convenient time to replace the 35-year-old boilers.”The boilers are 35 years old and don’t work well. We had two options: We could either inconvenience the residents for two weeks while we replaced it or not do anything and wait for it to fail,” James said. “It takes a minimum of two months to manufacture these boilers, so we chose to replace them rather than wait.”Residents were notified about the replacement of the boilers and subsequent lack of heated water two-and-a-half weeks in advance. They were also given a 25-percent rent credit on their daily rental rate for the inconvenience.The residents have been understanding of this situation and haven’t complained about the lack of hot water, said Godfrey.The boilers in the North Tower were replaced first, and then the South Tower boilers, which was done to simplify the project and allow residents to have access to heated water as long as possible, James said.Reports in the past have reflected frustrations with the boilers because hot water would only be available during short, sporadic times of the day, which convinced James the time had come to replace them. “When I first moved in, the hot water would periodically stop working,” Godfrey said. “We never really knew how long it would last, so now we no longer have to worry about that.” Fortunately for the residents of the towers, the project was finished three days ahead of schedule and now they needn’t worry about hot water issues related to the boilers, James said.

Ryan Perkins