I don't know what plans you perused, but one of our emeriti was on the original planning committee and he hates hearing the parking-garage story. According to said emeritus, the story of why the funds ran out and a new design had be sought (before the foundations were laid) is because an administrator had neglected to make a bid for matching federal funds for the project. This is sadder than the urban legend...
So, I went back to my source material. And it seems that there are bits and pieces of potential urban legend indeed mixed in with my recollection. So, for the first time, I'm fact-checking one of my own posts.
- The building, currently a nasty squat-looking thing, was meant to be a big (and probably equally ugly) skyscraper, a veritable brutalist beacon: True. There are extant drawings for the mega-skyscraper original, and for the slightly scaled-back skyscraper building.
- The underground offices were originally supposed to be parking spaces: Uncertain, given the evidence at my disposal. There were indeed plans for 150 parking spaces in the originals. My source material doesn't note whether those spaces were the same as where the faculty offices are. But if you ever worked in one of these, you'd understand why anyone would come to that conclusion.
- The tower project was abandoned because the whole thing was sliding down the hill under its own weight. False. The cap-off was, as Pedantic Prof. has heard, a result of underfunding. The rumor that it was due to a slipping building is a natural result, I think, of the fact that the floors and ceilings are so wildly canted (see previous post), and are more so the further you go underground.
I think that covers it. And I maintain that the current building serves as an Ozymandias-like monument to hubris. One last question to Pedantic Prof., who appears to be on the ground: So, does your source say why everything is so twisted? Is there movement going on? And more importantly: have structural repairs been made?
Most importantly: Do you have a window?
Structural repairs were made about three years ago and, allegedly, the flooding issues are at an end. The revamped basement is an improvement, but nothing detracts from the ghastly, nasty, and unhealthy building. One of my colleagues summed it up well to me: "it is most certainly a product of its time"!
Wait! You're saying that you just made up some shitte on your blogge for dramatic effect!?!?!? THIS MUST NOT STAND!!!!!!11!!!BELENTTY!!11!!!
It's campaign season, Comrade. I'm just getting in the spirit.
As someone who is involved in planning a building now, it's also true that the planners come to you and say, "This is what will be in the building", is anything missing? And 10 minutes later, if you don't think of anything, it's over. Why would you want staff support in the building where there are 40 faculty offices? Really?
Grumble Grumble. Forty years from now there will be urban legends about the huamnities building, though by then some of the offices intended for lecturers will be staff offices, and others will go to new junior faculty...
I've been to three separate universities at which the urban legend circulates that one of their libraries is sinking into the ground because someone forgot to account for the weight of the books beforehand. I doubt it's true at any of them.
That, Vellum, is the most *persistent* urban legend... and the most fun. I wonder if we can map all these sinking libraries?
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