Cooper parking lot closed for geothermal work

A part of the faculty and staff lot on the south side of campus has been closed temporarily to continue construction efforts for Ball State's geothermal project.

The east end of lot G13, located just south of Christy Woods, closed Monday for the university to drill additional boreholes. The rest of the parking lot will be closed in about four weeks.

Pedestrians will not have access to walk across the parking lot, but can continue to walk through Christy Woods and along University Avenue. Holders of the yellow parking permit who use the G13 lot can use the C3 green permit lot instead.

Ball State's Office of Facilities, Planning and Management awarded a contract to start drilling sometime around the end of September. The contractor has until August 15 to complete all the drilling and re-establish the soccer field and parking lot, said Jim Lowe, director of engineering, construction and operations.

The drilling is part of the second phase of the project to install a geothermal energy system on campus. This summer, Lowe said the project would cost $65 to $70 million. But the New York Times last week reported Lowe saying it would cost $75 to $80 million.

Lowe said there will be no other areas on campus that will be blocked for this particular phase of the drilling.

"We do apologize," Lowe said. "Construction activity can make it an inconvenience for folks in different times, but this is a very important project and we're hoping to complete it, so I appreciate everybody's cooperation." 


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