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The Antelope

Randall Hall closes down for renovations

Randall+receives+needed+upgrade+to+house+increase+in+Freshman.+Photo+by+Shelby+Berglund+%2F+Antelope+Staff
Randall receives needed upgrade to house increase in Freshman. Photo by Shelby Berglund / Antelope Staff

UNK continues campus improvements this semester with upgrades being made to Randall Hall. While the maintenance is somewhat minor, students will not inhabit Randall Hall for the 2023-24 academic year. 

The 175-bed capacity of Randall has been redistributed to other residence halls, one being the new fraternity housing, Martin Hall.

“Due to an increase in enrollment for first-year students, there is some overflow into Martin Hall,” said Matt Allbright, associate director of operations and residence life. “However, we are relocating students living in Martin to traditional buildings like Mantor, CTE and CTW as housing contract cancellations come up.”

Residence Life does not plan on using overflow into the fraternity housing as a long-term possibility.

“As of right now, Martin Hall will not be a housing option for non-fraternity men in the future,” Allbright said. “It was designed specifically for the fraternities, and it’s set up for their communities to closely interact.”

The plans for taking Randall offline began in September 2022. This gave ample time to adjust bed spaces and create a plan for overflow.

“The seventh floors of both towers as well as the sixth floor of CTE have been offline for the last few years because of UNK’s lower occupancy,” Allbright said. “We were able to open those floors back up and use those spaces.”

One previous resident of Randall Hall approves of the updates being made.

“When I was a resident in Randall, I struggled with our ceiling tiles falling down onto our beds,” said Halle Kinnett, former resident of Randall Hall. “I’m glad they’re taking care of these issues for future students.”

The $800,000 renovation consists of upgrades to the inside of rooms, but upgrades to the hallways and common spaces are limited. 

“It’s a deferred maintenance upgrade,” said Todd Gottula, senior director of communications and marketing. “So new flooring tiles, ceiling tiles, paint and upgraded lighting in each room.”

Randall Hall has had issues with condensation from the HVAC piping creating water stains in the ceiling tiles. This problem will be fixed.

“The heating and cooling systems in the rooms are being updated with some re-insulating of the HVAC piping that serves each room,” Gottula said. 

The refreshed rooms will be open for students next year, with the estimated completion date early summer of 2024. It is unclear if a similar upgrade will eventually be made to the connected Mantor Hall.

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