Starting this week, Syracuse University Vice Chancellor for Strategic Initiatives and Innovation J. Michael Haynie will host “SU Safe Weekly Roundup,” a series of weekly virtual update sessions to assist University community members in preparing for the Fall 2020 semester….
Facilities Services Plans Enhanced Services for Winter Accessibility
Even in the summer heat, Facilities Services staff members remain attentive as to how they can continue to better serve the campus community when the first snowflakes start to fall. To improve campus accessibility during the winter months, staff members have recently implemented several enhanced services, including targeted snow and ice clearance; expanded snow and ice clearance hours; increased availability of heated sidewalks; and individualized snow and ice clearance assistance.
The expanded services are the result of Facilities Services’ commitment to improve access to campus during winter conditions, and conversations between Pete Sala, vice president and chief campus facilities officer, and William Myhill, interim Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) coordinator. The two meet regularly to identify solutions for enhancing safe and equitable access to all facilities, services and activities for students, faculty, and staff with disabilities.
“It is so critical that we create an environment that is welcoming and accessible to all campus community members and visitors,” Myhill says. “This partnership with Facilities Services has been extremely productive, and will greatly benefit the University community as we all navigate challenging winter conditions. I appreciate all the work of the Facilities Services team to make sure our campus pathways, roads and entryways are safe and accessible.”
After a snowfall, the grounds staff clears snow and ice near student residences, bus stops and sidewalks to create a safe path to classes and other activities. As part of these enhanced services, snow removal staff have expanded hours to include a work shift beginning at 2 a.m. The earlier start allows additional time for snow removal and salt distribution.
“Syracuse University is committed to providing students, faculty and staff with safe and equitable access to all facilities, services and activities,” Sala says. “Facilities Services staff have worked diligently to understand the needs of campus community members with disabilities and offers services to assist with navigating the campus landscape.”
Students, faculty and staff with a disability, who are in need of more immediate assistance with snow and ice removal, can contact Pat Carroll, grounds manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 315.251.4992. Additionally, campus community members can contact Carroll directly to schedule personalized support, as well as discuss access needs, daily routes, class or office locations, and other activities.
An ongoing effort to provide heated campus sidewalks is also underway. Most recently, a new heated sidewalk between Smith Hall and Heroy Laboratory was installed. The heated sidewalks use environmentally friendly steam heat, and, when feasible, all new installations of sidewalks on campus are heated.
Sala invites the campus community to provide more feedback to assist with planning for the coming year. To offer feedback or suggestions, contact Facilities Services at 315.443.1234.