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Kentucky campus begins university maintenance project

Kentucky campus begins university maintenance project
Kentucky campus begins university maintenance project

Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky, is currently underway with a new maintenance management project that will update several university assets all over campus, according to the Murray State News.

The media outlet states that the university typically schedules such maintenance activity during the summer months, when there are fewer students roaming the grounds and the weather is more favorable for maintenance workers. However, the current project, taking place in the school's Wells Hall this month, is going on despite the students' presence.

The project was detailed in the University 2012-2013 Operating Budget, in which the school's facilities management team estimated maintenance to cost about $13 million this year, which includes asset maintenance projects, building services and facility design and construction. Chief facilities officer Kim Oatman said that of the $12.9 million in this year's budget, $1.7 million will be used strictly for maintenance activity across the campus.

According to the media outlet, for every maintenance project the students see, such as the renovations being made to the basketball arena, there is likely another one being conducted to improve the overall look of the university. At the school's Wilson Hall, for example, Oatman said that many projects are going on that the students aren't even aware of.

"These maintenance tasks do often go unnoticed since they take place on top of the roofs, in mechanical rooms of buildings and even sometimes underground," Oatman said. "However, they are essential to the operations of the university."

Oatman added that the Facilities Management Department has a strong grasp on most of the projects, however some are too big for the department alone, including the repair and re-tarring of the roof on Wells Hall. For this project, the school is bringing on outside help.

"Our crews do routine maintenance such as cleaning out roof drains and making minor repairs, but due to the equipment and expertise required to re-roof a building, it is typically much more efficient to have done by external roofing contractors," he said.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) states that falls are the biggest threat to roofing contractors, and compliance with established rules is crucial for ongoing operations.

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