How COVID-19 has affected construction and renovation projects on campus


Pedestrian walkway in Lot A arranged due to construction.

COVID-19 caused many countries and states to go into lockdown. As quarantine has affected several businesses, it also put the Maurer Center construction slightly behind schedule. But it hasn’t negatively affected the Starbucks renovation or ‘Pub 1910’ in the Bowen Thompson Student Union.

According to the College of Business Dean, Raymond Braun, faculty and staff are cautiously optimistic the Maurer Center will open in early August in preparation for the fall classes.

Braun said construction is slightly behind schedule due to factories temporarily shutting down and not delivering supplies necessary for building. The workforce on site was also reduced to ensure social distancing regulations were met, making progress slow down with fewer workers.

Dining Director, Michael L. Paulus, said the virus hasn’t slowed any progress of the upcoming Starbucks and ‘Pub 1910’ renovations and are expected to open as planned.

On Feb. 28, it was announced that the BGSU Board of Trustees approved a Starbucks renovation that would move it into the current location of the Black Swamp Pub. As a result, the pub would move into the first-floor computer lab in the Union and reestablish itself as ‘Pub 1910’ instead of the ‘Black Swamp Pub.’ And the computer lab would move into the current location of Starbucks.

Director Paulus spoke about the opportunity an empty campus presented for these projects. 

“Actually the current construction market was negatively affected by the COVID-19 crisis, as it caused many projects to shut down either temporary or permanently, this gave BGSU a unique place in the market as a funded project with little or no impediments to project start as the campus is virtually empty. BGSU Dining recognized huge project savings as the industry was hungry for work and the project was put out to bid.” 

He also says there were no design changes to ensure social distancing.

Although both projects were affected by the coronavirus, both are still scheduled to open on time at the moment.

For updates on the progress of the Maurer Center, there is a live camera up on the College of Business page that shows the current state of construction. BGSU also provided an update on their Youtube channel.