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Water War, Standing No More

by Tyler Hilbert

The Jackson County campus of WVU Parkersburg had a long time battle with standing water in their parking lot. Located in the center of the front parking lot of the Jackson County Campus Administrative Building, a large area of standing water has upset the campus for awhile now. The main issue was a low spot in the contour of the blacktop and any direct collection of rainwater or runoff from the road in front of the facility. This was not only an eyesore for the facility but it also created a nuisance for students and faculty trying to travel between the parking lot and the building. This is also potentially dangerous during the winter months due to the freezing temperatures. Luckily, campus maintenance was able to keep the area safely salted, which resulted in no injuries on campus.

The money for the project was easy to find. Since parking fees are designated specifically for maintenance of the parking lots. Several years ago there was enough funding to repave and strip all of the parking lots at the Jackson County campus. They were hopeful that this would eliminate the problem, but unfortunately it did not. The issue was finally brought to the Facilities Master Plan Review and Safety Committees and the effort was started to determine the most efficient form of correction and to find a source of funding.

“After discussing options of “crowning” that section with more blacktop to create a flow of water around the building, replace that section with concrete, modify the current drainage system or install a new one, the decision was made to install a new drainage system for that area, John Gorrell, Dean of the Jackson County campus, said.”

A section of the blacktop was removed, and two storm drains connected with six inch lines were installed in the lot. These were then tied into an existing storm drain. The only items remaining to complete the project are seeding of the lawn and patching the small area that was removed. These projects will be completed in early spring. In the meantime, the problem appears to have been solved based on the positive responses from staff and students. The Jackson County Campus community is extremely happy to have this problem resolved now and looks forward to a slip free winter and better looking campus.

The Jackson County campus staff and faculty are committed to the well-being of the campus. The faculty and staff are always looking for ways to improve the grounds to better not only the campus, but the community as well.

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