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Landscape Services completes campus projects

Kyle Witzigman | Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Students taking part in the mass exodus to and from classes each day have been treated to a newly beautified campus landscape.

From South Quad and the Grotto to DeBartolo Quad and Notre Dame Avenue, projects were completed to accommodate students’ walking patterns and to streamline overall campus upkeep.

Sarah Misener, associate vice president for Campus Services, said the project ideas originated from reviews conducted by Landscape Services and Facilities Design & Operations.

Landscape Services and Facilities Design & Operations review areas of campus and prioritize landscape installation renewal projects on an annual basis,” Misener said.

Misener said the Landscape Services team begins reviewing campus project possibilities in the winter months and sets completion dates for the summer months. Because shrubs and plants on campus require annual renewal, Misener said, Landscape Services must narrow down possible new projects to a manageable list that will then be added to the summer workload.

“Summer months represent the best time to do much of the planting work on campus,” Misener said.  “Consequently, several projects are staged with completion dates that are prior to or near the start of the academic year.”

Major projects this summer included the installation of brick sidewalk trim, perennial beds planted on South Quad, the placement of mulch around trees on South Library Quad and the realignment of pedestrian crosswalks near the Grotto, she said.

DeBartolo Quad and the gazebo on Debartolo Quad, were refurbished, and visitor-friendly landscape was added, Misener said.  Notre Dame Avenue’s aging and damaged trees were replaced and more were planted along parts of the avenue’s gaps, she said.

 Lyons Hall and the Morris Inn also saw completed renovations this summer, and work was done on the Center for Flow Physics and Control White Field Facility, Misener said.

“[These projects] add to the students’ experience … by creating and maintaining beautiful spaces on which to study, pray, work and play,” she said.

Misener said campus landscaping projects are funded by donations from benefactors, which was the case with this summer’s work on the Morris Inn, or managed within the annual landscape budget.

Freshman Ian Flyke said he was pleased with the updates.

“I really like the campus changes, especially the rock courtyard between DeBartolo [Hall] and the Snite [Museum of Art],” he said.

Flyke said he began to follow Notre Dame’s landscaping team’s Twitter handle, @NDgroundscrew, to see updates on their work and pictures of continuing projects.

“I really like seeing what they’re up to now,” he said. “They have entertaining tweets.”

Senior Chris Ayala said he is impressed by the work done by the landscaping team.

“I think the landscaping is nice, but I really miss being able to sit on the raised ledge outside DeBartolo [Hall],” he said. “It’s aesthetically pleasing, but beyond that I don’t see any tangible benefits.”

Sophomore Ethan Muehlstein said he appreciated the improvements in front of Lyons Hall on South Quad.

“In the future, I’d like to see more flowers on God Quad so you can walk along flower paths, and overall more lights so you can highlight the gardens at night,” he said. “Nevertheless, the work the Landscaping team does is phenomenal and I am proud to go here and see it daily.”

Sophomore Haley Van Steenwyk said she is “still getting used to the changes,” especially by DeBartolo Hall.

“I like that they’re doing something different, but I think they should have had it all completed before we got to campus,” she said. “I like that they have more plants everywhere, but I feel like we’re still waiting to see a finished product.”

Contact Kyle Witzigman at [email protected]