Flood update: some progress made, more news Friday

Posted on Wednesday, February 6, 2013

We would like to share an update on the progress made so far in our continuing effort to clean up and recover from last week’s major flood.

It is too early to know the total cost of this incident, given that some costs (relocations, for example) haven’t even been incurred yet.

But we have been hit hard and damage is likely to run into the millions of dollars. We have filed a claim with our insurance company.

Close to 100 people have to be relocated, some of them for between two and four months as their workspaces are cleaned and made habitable again.

People are being moved to other University spaces where possible, but we will have to rent nearby office space off campus to house many of those whose offices have been affected.

Longer-term relocations will affect those who work in the James Annex, as well as the second floor of the James Administration Building. People normally located in the basements of 3534 University, the Birks Building and Wilson Hall are also facing longer-term relocation.

Once details of the relocations are known, we will post contact information on the McGill Reporter website, next to the course relocation section.

We are still relocating about 25 classes out of the Wong Engineering Building per day and cancelling about half a dozen labs that cannot be relocated. We hope to know by Friday how much longer the Wong Building will be closed to classes and researchers. The issue is the safety of the occupants and the severity of damage to electrical equipment, such as high-voltage transformers and breakers.

We have found a way to get some power to the building and are working to get everything back online as quickly as possible.

If the news is good on Friday, we may be able to open within a matter of days; if not, it could be a couple of weeks and there would be other issues to deal with in the longer term.

We’ll post another message on Friday to let you know how it’s going.

In the meantime, we thank you again for your patience and co-operation as we deal with this unwelcome and unexpected event. And thanks again to all those who are working so hard to get us back to normal.

 – Ron Proulx, Associate Vice-Principal (Interim) of University Services



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