By Coatlicue Villanueva
While drilling near B Street on Aug. 23, construction crews at City College hit an unidentified pipe that carries chilled water to the air conditioning units in the C building. This caused many professors and students to be without air conditioning on the first day of fall classes.
According to Jerry M. Davis, Vice President of Administrative Services on campus, construction crews were “in the process of installing a retaining wall.” While doing this, a pipe was hit that was not shown on the plans they were given. Current plans date back to the 1970s.
Professors Elva Salinas and Ana Rogers teach classes in the C building and had to carry their own fans to class everyday in an attempt to cool down the air for their students and themselves.
“It’s intolerable in the classroom,” said Rogers, who had to hold her class outside due to the heat. “Students are literally pouring sweat.”
Some became so nauseous that some had to step outside her classroom in order cool down. Rogers jokingly said how she uses her classroom as an example of Native American sweat lodges in her history class.
“I’ve worked here since 1975 and I’ve never seen anything like this,” said Salinas, who also experienced her students becoming nauseated due to the heat. “The air gets suffocating.”
Salinas added that they still keep teaching despite the heat. “Faculty are masters at adapting and incorporating their environment into the learning for their students,” she explained.
Crews worked through the night to try and repair the damage. Originally the time given for the repair was 24 hours. This schedule has now been extended to “a couple of days,” according to Davis.
Davis sent out an e-mail Aug. 23 explaining the situation and that construction crews were in the process of replacing the leaked water as well as checking the current stability of valves. He assured that construction crews were “doing everything in their power to get the air conditioning back as soon as possible.”