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(May 18, 2000, Gazette)

Important notice for Aquarena patrons

With construction underway on Memorial University’s new Field House, the Aquarena parking lot will be closed and a new temporary parking area will be opened on the running track adjacent to the Aquarena facility. This temporary parking area will be accessible from Westerland Road, near the entrance to the CBC Building. Aquarena customers who require wheelchair accessible parking spots may park in temporary spaces accessible through Lambe’s Lane, on the south end of the Aquarena. The Tim Hortons outlet will have two designated spots on the track for quick stop parking. Construction of the new parking lot is expected to be finished the first week of July. For further information, patrons can call the Aquarena directly at 737-3799.

Field House construction set to begin

Construction of the new Field House athletics and recreation complex at Memorial University received final approval from the university’s Board of Regents at its meeting May 3.

Dr. Axel Meisen, Memorial’s president, said the Field House will cost approximately $13 million.

“The Field House complex will be a multi-purpose indoor sport centre,” he said. “It will significantly enhance Memorial’s physical education facilities and enable us to improve our academic offerings and athletics and improve the recreational services we offer to the community at large.”

The Field House project is part of Memorial’s Opportunity Fund, the campaign to raise money for new student services facilities, scholarships and fellowships, and teaching and research initiatives.
“While our original target was $50 million, we have raised closer to $60 million in total,” said Dr. Meisen.

The Field House complex is a multi-purpose environment where many activities can take place simultaneously. It will feature seating to accommodate more than 2,000 spectators for major athletic and other events. It also includes indoor running and walking tracks, a multi-purpose fitness/recreation area and playing courts for a variety of sports, among other facilities.

The project had been expected to start earlier this year, but delays were caused by unexpected increases in the cost of the facility.
“The bids on the project came in about $3.4 million higher than our consultants had advised it would cost,” said Dr. Meisen. “We looked at a number of scenarios, including changing the design, but we concluded that the best option was to proceed with the original plan. We will find the additional funding within The Opportunity Fund and related sources. The money will not be coming from the university’s operating budget.”

Dr. Meisen said the project should be completed by late 2001.

“There has been great demand for improved athletics and recreation facilities at the university and in the province for quite some time, so the sooner we can get the project going, the better,” he said.

Small fire caused by light fixture

Fire fighters from the St. John’s Fire Department were called to Memorial’s Physical Education Building at about 12:15 p.m. May 8, after a light fixture above the pool caught fire and burned some of the suspended ceiling panels. The fire was quickly extinguished and there were no injuries. The Physical Education Building is open, but the pool will be closed until further notice for cleanup and repair.

Learning Mandarin

Two students of the Mandarin language, Laura O’Reilly and Samantha Smith, are off to Taiwan, all expenses paid. The two students worked their way through the intricacies of Chinese with such diligence in the past two terms that they arrived at the top of their class.
They then applied to the Canada-Taiwan Exchange Program in competition with about 100 students from across Canada. Ms. O’Reilly was selected; Ms. Smith is an alternate. The program pays air fare and living expenses so that students can attend language courses at a university in Taiwan, while soaking up Chinese culture. Study is covered for six months and can be renewed.

This is the first time that Chinese (Mandarin) has been offered at MUN in the Department of Religious Studies. With instructor Dr. Lee Rainey, students learned basic grammar, speaking, and how to write Chinese characters. They were also introduced to the use of chopsticks, how to order “dim sum,” and how to celebrate Chinese New Year. The success of the course has been capped with these awards, said Dr. Rainey.


New Senators elected

Senate elections have concluded and the following people have been elected/re-elected to the Senate for a term of office starting Sept. 1, 2000, and expiring Aug. 31, 2003: Dr. John Usher, Business Administration; Dr. Ray Gosine and Dr. Gary Sabin, Engineering and Applied Science; Christopher Dennis and Karen Lippold, Library; Dr. Vernon Richardson and Dr. Michael Murray, Medicine; Dr. Mohamedtaki Kara, Pharmacy; Vivienne M. Kuester, Physical Education, Recreation and Athletics; Dr. Margaret Brosnan, Dr. John Evans and Dr. Bruce Watson, Science; and Dr. Michael Wernerheim, Social Sciences.

Dr. Dennis Kimberley, Social Work, was elected for a period of one year starting Sept. 1, 2000, and expiring Aug. 31, 2001.