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Pond Infrastructure Replacement to Impact Hawkins Hall

SUNY Plattsburgh’s Hawkins Pond is about to receive a facelift — and become more environmentally friendly.

Beginning May 19 and concluding in the fall of 2015, the famous pond that has been the backdrop for many wedding and prom photos will be part of a $3.6 million construction project, paid for by the SUNY Construction Fund. The project will replace hot water, storm and sewer lines around Hawkins Hall. Plattsburgh-based Luck Brothers Inc. will be the general contractor.

Because of the construction, access to Hawkins, Hudson and Ward halls will be somewhat restricted through the summer and potentially into the fall. Fencing will circle Hawkins Hall and the pond area, and half of the Hawkins Hall parking lot will be used as a staging area for maintenance efforts.

Pedestrian traffic and parking will both be impacted.

Access to Hawkins will be allowed through three doors — two in front facing Beekman Street and one on the northwest corner of the building. If all runs smoothly, fencing may come down at the start of the fall 2014 semester, Capital Project Manager Rick Larche said. However, exact dates are difficult to predict as there are always unknowns with site infrastructure projects.

In addition to pipe replacement and repair, the project will add a new water line around Hawkins to help with future maintenance and emergency work.

In summer 2015, a liner will also be added to Hawkins Pond to conserve water and keep the pond filled year-round. A waterfall, as well as new plants, trees and shrubs will reconfigure the landscape.

"The environmental science program will hopefully be able to use the landscape as a teaching tool given the native plant species being utilized," Larche said. Much of the project comes down to conserving energy and improving efficiency, he added.

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