Karisa Cernera ’14
Over the summer, Trinity College implemented new changes on campus to improve the lives of students and faculty. These changes include renovations to common spaces like the Mather quad and the lobby of Ferris as well as changes to dining areas such as the Cave and the Bistro.
Most notably, Trinity underwent a complete redevelopment of the Mather Quad which is now renamed the Gates Quad in honor of trustee John Gates, Jr. ’76, P’13, who donated the funds for the renovation. These renovations are intended to create a more open and easily accessible area for Trinity students and faculty. “The redevelopment of Gates Quadrangle will transform the space from an underutilized green space to an inviting, timeless landscape with sculptural mounded lawn areas surrounded by pedestrian walkways connecting the quadrangle to the rest of the campus,” said Katie Martin, a registered landscape architect with Chicago-based Hoerr Schaudt Landscape Architects.
The $2.65 million project was headed by Tom Fusciello, Trinity’s director of construction, design and capital projects, and Consigli Construction Co., Inc located in Hartford was hired for construction work over the summer. Renovations included a complete reconfiguration of the grass and walkways leading to Mather Hall. The paved stones that line the new walkways now match the stones of the long walk, creating continuity on walkways throughout the school. These walkways now also include LED lights that increase lighting in these areas and heighten security. Fences were also installed to separate the walkways from the grass. Renovations also include more greenery, with the addition of many trees.
There were also major changes to the entrances of the Austin Arts Center, the Cave and the south side of Mather Hall. The stairs leading to the entrance of the Austin Arts Center have been removed, and instead, a plaza was created with mounded grass that creates a more flowing and aesthetic view of the center. Similarly, the stairs as well as the wall leading down to the cave patio have also been removed. The Cave patio now has a more rounded shape, which intends to serve as an informal amphitheater. “The new Gates Quadrangle will be an elegant space that will help bring the campus together by simplifying the pedestrian walkways and creating a variety of spaces for students and faculty to enjoy,” said Martin.
The south side of Mather Hall has also been completely changed. The parking lot has been removed, and has been replaced by a roundabout. There are also more paving stones and greenery.
This semester, Trinity also issued new identification cards to each underclassman. The cards now have a picture of Trinity’s campus on them instead of the faded photo of the long walk and the Trinity crest that adorned the old IDs. Additionally, the identification cards differ depending on age. Members of the Trinity student body who are under the age of 21-years-old have vertical cards, while students 21 and older have horizontal identification cards. These different cards were implemented in accordance with the new social policy and the college’s strides to crack down on underage drinking.
There were also major renovations done to the lobby of Ferris. The turnstiles were removed, creating a much more open and inviting entrance area. The Trinity symbol adorns the lobby floor and showcases the Bantam colors to mach the new dark blue and gold walls. Also, Trinity has now created a wall showcasing the various varsity sports. Each sport has their own plaque and photo on the wall leading from the lobby to the gyms. Trinity T’s embellish each and every window in the hallway and Trinity gold and blue bantams serve as decoration.
Lastly, there were major changes done to the hours of the dining halls. The Cave has now gotten rid of their breakfast hours, and now opens at 11 and closes at midnight. The Cave has also changed some of their meal options by including a cereal bar and moving the drink fountains out into the seating area. Similarly, the Bistro has also changed their hours of operation. Wednesday through Sunday night, the Bistro will now be open until 2:30 am to students out on Vernon during late night. Menu options include items such as pancakes, French toast, eggs and other breakfast items. Starting this semester, the Bistro will also serve beer to members of the Trinity student body who are 21 years or older.