Campus maintenance team challenges
Have a read of this recent article, by Alan Mahon, TurfPro's Ireland editor, featured in Turf Pro’s weekly highlights.
It helps to highlight the scope of the work that’s involved with keeping our campus grounds running smoothly.
It’s not just our Main Campus we have to deal with, there are 17 external properties to manage as well all with each with their own set of unique challenges.
Closure of the Dining Hall, the Commons Rooms and the Atrium
The Dining Hall, Commons Rooms and Atrium will be closed until 19th May 2021 to facilitate window refurbishments. The refurbishment is being carried out to improve functionality, aesthetics and general protection from weathering elements. All works will be carried out in accordance with the Specification for Repair to Sliding Sash Windows.
These works commenced on the 6th of April and weather permitting completion is expected on the 19th of May 2021.
12 Energy Saving Tips
Here are 12 useful tips to help staff and students save energy....
1. Talk to your colleagues to agree responsibilities for switching off shared kitchen and office equipment, including photocopiers, printers, scanners, fax machines, fridges, freezers, vending machines, hot water boilers, radios, etc.
2. Survey labs, to identify and agree with colleagues which equipment can be switched off during the break. Remember some equipment may affect other labs (e.g. fume cupboards on linked ductwork). For example; arrange the combination of equipment etc into one fume cupboard, so the rest can be turned off.
Before you leave…
3. Shut down your PC and turn your monitor off
Did you know that leaving your PC and monitor on over the holidays would cost nearly €6!
4. Ensure all windows and doors are closed.
5. After doing the background work in tips 1 and 2, switch off all office and lab equipment, including photocopiers, printers, scanners, fax machines etc, and fume cupboards, incubators, glass ovens, compressors etc, Un-used fume cupboards in particular can waste huge amounts of warm air – which costs money, and wastes fuel.
Did you know that a fume cupboard left on 24/7 uses 6 tonnes of CO2, which is more than the average home!!!
6. Switch off all unnecessary lights – but only switch off exit route lights
if you are sure you are the last to leave.
7. Switch off vending machines - ideally hot drinks machines should
be emptied of water before the break and then re-filled before being
switched on again after Christmas.
8. Turn off all water consuming devices in your area and leave off when the
College is closed. This reduces risks of flooding with unsupervised equipment
9. Switch off your Zip/Burco hot water boiler – Turn off all wall mounted water boilers in labs, break rooms and rest areas
During a long break…
10. Take time to ‘switch off’ while College is closed - if it is necessary for you to come in over the holidays please ensure you switch off all lights and equipment as you leave.
Trinity College Dublin’s first Estates Strategy positions the campus for the future
Student learning, teaching and research at the heart of Trinity’s Estates Strategy
Estates Strategy includes:
- €230 million capital programme
- Residential Plan
- Conservation Plan
- Refurbishment Plan
Dublin, Wednesday, November 21st, 2018 – Student learning, teaching and research are at the heart of Trinity College Dublin’s first Estates Strategy launched today [Wednesday, November 21st]. College Bursar, Veronica Campbell presented the University’s Estates Strategy with its €230 million capital programme to the gathered College community of students and staff at a special event organised for the College community.
Emphasising the Estates Strategy’s key objectives, Professor Campbell said:
“Trinity has one of the most significant campuses worldwide. As a university campus it first and foremost serves the needs of the College community. It provides an environment that supports student learning, enables research and creates an ambience in which the Trinity community connects and flourishes. We aim to provide facilities that support our students and staff for all their needs and ensure there is a plan to sustain growth over the long-term.”
The Estates Strategy includes flagship projects such as the new Trinity Business School which will open in March. The Printing House Square development which is due to open in 2019, providing on campus student accommodation for up to 250 students along with a range of student services.
It also includes the E3-Engineering, Environment and Emerging Technologies initiative at Trinity. Central to the vision of E3 is the construction of the Learning Foundry, a state of the art 6,086 square metre facility based on the main Trinity campus which will deliver new teaching facilities and an innovative interactive learning space for undergraduate and postgraduate students.
Other capital developments will include the expansion of student accommodation at Trinity Hall in Dartry to house 300 new beds for students, as well as the expansion of the School of Law and the refurbishment of the Arts Block.
A master plan is being developed for the Grand Canal Innovation District centred on a new campus in the heart of Dublin’s docklands. And there are plans for the Trinity St James’s Cancer Institute which will provide a comprehensive cancer care centre on the St James’s Hospital campus.
As well as these capital projects, the Estates Strategy incorporates a long term refurbishment plan and conservation plan which will take in the Library as well as other key buildings on campus. It also provides for a residential strategy that will serve the long-term needs of staff and students.
Professor Campbell added:
“The Estates Strategy will allow the campus to continue to evolve and support the academic mission by improving the efficiency and quality of learning space and by introducing adaptive reuse of buildings to meet future requirements. It will upgrade heritage buildings, support growth areas and position the campus for the future.”
Concluding the launch, Provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast said:
“Space is essential to community, and in Trinity our sense of community comes so much from sharing this beautiful campus. Better management of space will improve connectivity across the University. The building of new transformative spaces, like the E3 Learning Foundry, will enable new approaches in teaching.”
College Bursar, Prof Campbell is available for interview. Pictures will be sent to your picture desks by 4pm today.
For media queries, contact Head of Media Relations, Caoimhe Ní Lochlainn, tel: 8962310\ 087-9958014, email@example.com
Public Theatre Organ Project
Following a 15 month conservation programme, the organ from the Examination Hall in Trinity College has now been re-installed. The project was managed by the Estates and Facilities Department. An article outlining the works undertaken has been just been published in the “Trinity Today” magazine. This can be viewed at the following link: www.tcd.ie/alumni/assets/pdf/trinity-today/legacy-giving.pdf
Oregon Maples - Update
Letter to University Community on behalf of John Parnell, Chair of Grounds and Gardens Advisory Committee
Dear Colleagues and Students,
A number of you have requested that I continue to inform you as to developments in Library Square and especially the future of the remaining Oregon Maples.
Last week we obtained a second report from our tree consultants – Bartlett Consulting - who made a number of recommendations that reflected the fact that extensive wood decay existed in at least one major limb of the tree. On this basis Bartlett’s stated that:
1.’we recommend that this limb [= the main eastern limb] is removed.’
Almost immediately after Bartlett’s report became available large fruiting bodies of a wood decay fungus – Polyporus squamosus – became visible on that limb [See image below].
Estates and Facilities staff therefore commenced limb removal earlier this week. In order to balance the weight of the remaining crown another smaller limb on the west side of the tree was also removed. Nevertheless, removal of the major limb had to cease midway as it became evident that the tree’s structure was so highly compromised that any further work would likely lead to its immediate collapse. After careful consideration and following extensive consultation with the Provost, the Grounds and Gardens Advisory Committee agreed to the complete removal of the tree which will commence immediately.
It is a sad moment for us all, but most especially the staff of Estates and Facilities who had, along with Bartlett Consulting, worked so hard to prolong the life of the College’s Oregon Maples.
Chair of the Grounds and Gardens Advisory Committee
Water Conservation Appeal
Due to the recent dry weather Irish Water has today issued a hose pipe ban in the greater Dublin area. The current dry spell is expected to continue which is going to create difficulty for Irish Water to meet water demand. The University has to support the effort to reduce consumption of water during what is likely to be a protracted period. Please see details from Irish Water on link www.water.ie
The University is using well water for any landscape watering on the campus.
In order to reduce water consumption all staff and students should only use water when absolutely necessary and when used – as little as possible. Please ensure:
- Any taps are turned off when not in use.
- Do not leave taps running for washing any dishware
- In laboratories ensure any water consuming equipment is turned off immediately after use completed.
- Only run dish washers or glass washers when full
- If any water based cleaning operations can be deferred they should be scheduled for later in the year.
- If living in University residences do not run taps washing teeth and take showers for the shortest time possible.
- If you become aware a water leak please report to firstname.lastname@example.org giving the building name and exact location of the leak
Further details on measures to reduce water consumption can be found at www.water/for-home/conservation
Collapse of Oregon Maple in Library Square
Letter to University Community posted on behalf of John Parnell, Chair of Grounds and Gardens Advisory Committee
I am sure that many of you already know that one of the iconic Oregon Maples in Library Square (that on the GMB side of the square) catastrophically and unexpectedly collapsed at about 2.45am on Saturday: luckily nobody was injured.
As you'll see from the photo below the scene was one of devastation and it is only through the exceptionally hard work of the Campus Services Staff in Estates and Facilities that the many tons of timber have been removed and stored for future use and the Square so effectively cleaned up. So, on a personal basis I'd like to thank them.
I was more surprised than most people that this tree collapsed when it did. Why? Well as part of the maintenance programme for the grounds of the University we regularly and frequently get the trees professionally surveyed by the leading international experts -Bartlett - so as to assess their condition. The latest survey, in April 2018, indicated that there were concerns about the condition of all three Oregon Maples in the University, two of which are in Library Square. It was not believed, however, that any were in immediate danger of collapse. Indeed, it was hoped the life of the Maples in Library Square might, possibly, be prolonged through remedial works, including lightening of the crown of the trees.
We simply do not know, and probably will never know, why this Maple in Library Square collapsed at the time it did: certainly, there was no failure of the supporting cables in tree, indeed some of the anchor points were dragged through the limbs of the tree in the collapse. It is probable that the collapse was at least in part due to the very hot weather causing exceptional physiological and physical stress for a tree that was not in tip-top condition.
In terms of some of the other iconic trees surveyed this April it is clear, as I mentioned earlier, that both of the remaining Oregon Maples are compromised and I had prepared an email to the University community saying so for delivery this Tuesday. And this email updates my email communication of January 2016 that highlighted plans for the development of the University’s landscape and discussed its trees.
The external consultants we commission use a variety of techniques, including state-of-the-art tomography, to assess the condition of the trees [Tomography is similar to an ultrasound scan providing coloured images of sections through the trunk or branches of a tree - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5238698/ provides a detailed scientific paper on this technique]. In these images blue and pink indicate decay or incipient decay in wood; green indicates damaged wood and brown indicates solid wood.
The image below provided by Bartlett shows a very large amount of dead or damaged wood on the north-west side of the trunk of the Maple in New Square: Bartlett estimate that only approximately one third of the trunk at this level is solid wood. Paul Dowding, our in-house, emeritus tree pathologist and Bartlett also confirm the existence of two different wood-decaying fungi (Ganoderma applanatum / australe and Bjerkandera adjusta) on this tree, with both trunk and roots infected.
The Maple in New Square undoubtedly poses a risk to people and objects nearby. The advice of all expert parties concerned, accepted by the Grounds and Gardens Advisory Committee and the Provost, is that this tree be removed. Luckily, it had been anticipated some time ago by the Grounds and Gardens Advisory Committee that this might occur and two replacement trees - an Irish Sessile Oak (Quercus petraea) from Killarney and a Beech (Fagus sylvatica) were planted close by a number of years ago. So, whilst a gap will undoubtedly be created initially it should be rapidly occluded and the landscape of that part of the University re-filled.The other remaining Maple next to the Long Room has significant decay in some of its major limbs. We intend to follow the expert advice that indicates that recurrent remedial works may potentially, allow it to remain standing, at least for a while. These works include lightening the canopy through highly selective removal of over-dense parts of the canopy (undertaken this weekend), treatment of the roots and some of the limbs with a mixture of fungicide and nutrient solution.
As Chair of the Grounds and Gardens Committee I believe that we should use this loss to examine the layout of Library Square and plan its future in detail and without undue haste. I will forward further details on this when they have been agreed.
To end on a more positive note I draw your attention to two things.
Firstly, very recently, through the activities of the Commercial Revenue Unit, and following support from the Provost, sufficient funds have been made available to employ three craft gardeners, including a new team lead. This was a sensitive and critical development as the previous Head Groundsman had moved to a new role in Estates and Facilities and the sole remaining gardener had moved to a post outside of TCD. Colleagues may have noted that the new team have begun to tackle the inevitably huge backlog in maintenance, undertaking essential clearance and commencing a replanting programme: especially in and around the Broadwalk. These activities will continue for some considerable time.
We have also discovered recently that the drive to promote a more biodiverse campus and promote pollination activities has begun to pay-off with a couple of colonies of ground-nesting / mining bees discovered on the Flat iron – see images below and see: https://campusbuzz.blog/2018/05/09/trinitys-campus-bees-fruits-of-the-campus-pollinator-plan/
Chair of the Grounds and Gardens Advisory Committee
Fellow’s Square Lawn Maintenance
In order to carry out maintenance on the lawn area of Fellow’s Square it will be necessary to cordon off the area from 7am on Wednesday 9th May to 8am on Monday 14th May 2018.
Members of the University community are requested to cooperate by not entering the lawn area during this time.
Urgent Appeal to Conserve Water
Following last week’s spell of extreme weather, Irish Water is currently working to restore full water supply to customers by repairing resulting water leaks and pipe bursts. As water demand rises and reservoir levels continue to drop, Irish Water is periodically reducing water pressure and requesting everyone take steps to conserve water.
Further advice on water conservation and planned periods of reduced water pressure is available on Irish Water’s website at: Irish Water Supply Updates
Estates and Facilities encourages all staff and students to follow the advice provided in order to avoid disruption to supply. We would also request that staff and students report leaks or burst pipes as soon as possible to email@example.com
Medium Voltage Upgrade - Completion of Works
I am pleased to inform you of the successful completion of the Campus Medium Voltage Upgrade project. The campus now has a secure and more resilient electrical power supply, with an additional 40% capacity, to cope with the demands of our new Business School and Printing House Square projects, as well as the E3 project on campus.
The Medium Voltage Upgrade required over 3km of excavation, removing over 5,000 tonnes of soil to install 3.5km of new power cable ducts around the Campus. A new incoming ESB supply room was built at the Trinity Business School to house the most up-to-date electrical switchgear, requiring the replacement of all 10 Campus substations in the second half of 2017, mostly overnight to minimise disruption to our normal operations. On 15th January 2018, our new ESB supply was made live and the project team managed a seamless cutover from the old supply to the new, effectively re-wiring the main electrical infrastructure of the campus while it remained fully operational.
The project required a major financial investment from Trinity, in part funded by revenue generated by the Commercial Revenue Unit. I am happy to report that the project was completed on time, to the highest quality and safety standards and within budget.
I would like to thank Estates & Facilities, in particular Emmet Dalton, Kieron McGovern and Greg Power, and all of you who have facilitated this essential project over the last twelve months, along with our main contractor, Mercury Engineering and consultants AECOM.
Professor Veronica Campbell
Bursar & Director of Strategic Innovation
The photos below show the interior of the new supply room (Photo Credit: Kieron McGovern) and the team leaders outside one of the new substations (Photo Credit: Sharppix).
Introducing our new Head Of Safety
Estates and Facilities is delighted to welcome our new Head of Safety, Dr. Katharine Murray, who joined us on 3 January 2018, replacing Tom Merriman who retired last year after 18 years’ service as College Safety Officer.
Katharine holds a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Manchester, and is a chartered member of the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health. She joins us from An Post where she held the role of Safety and Environment Manager and has previous experience managing safety in Tedcastles Oil Products and as an inspector with the Health and Safety Authority.
Dr. Katharine Murray, Head of Safety
Restoration and Re-Installation of the Organ in the Examination Hall
Following a 15 month conservation programme, the organ from the Examination Hall in Trinity College is currently being re-installed. The project saw the restoration of the two cases for the Great Organ (the main case dating from 1684) and the Chair Organ (the smaller case dating from 1705). A new organ was made which was based as closely as possible to the organ as it was in 1705.
Overall the organ is a little more compact than was previously the case, as it had been augmented on a number of occasions. A feature of the new organ is the introduction of a chair organ, which slightly overhangs the balcony from behind the organist’s seat.
During the restoration works, sumptuous paintwork was discovered on the original façade pipes of the organ. All of this 17th Century decoration was revealed, missing sections were touched up and gilding applied where it had been previously lost.
Photo of newly installed organ reproduced by kind permission of Mr David Davison:
Introducing the new Trinity student on-line locker rental system
You can now reserve a locker as easily as buying tickets online! All students registered for the 2017/18 Academic Year are eligible to rent a locker. Just login to your TCard account at tcard.tcd.ie on Tuesday, 26th September 2017.
Lockers will be offered on a first come first served basis for a period of 9 months commencing 26th September 2017 until 25th June 2018 for a fee of €20.00. You will pay using a debit or credit card, not your TCard balance.