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Bricks without steel

Another brick falls from the Rice Bell Tower

By Hope Bolinger | Echo

Students once again find the bell tower surrounded by caution tape

Students once again find the bell tower surrounded by caution tape

It seemed the bell tolled for itself on the last week of J-term.

Students expressed annoyance when encountering the recent construction: “It was kind of sad seeing it all taped up,” sophomore Sadie Schultz said. “I was also kind of frustrated because I thought it was fixed.”

The last round of repairs in the summer and fall experienced major delays. S.A. Boyce Corporation, a masonry structure firm, waitlisted construction on the bell tower for two months while they handled other requests.

But, this time around, Taylor won’t have to wait as long.

Ron Sutherland, business administration vice president, said a contractor is in the process of removing all the corner bricks and fastening them with stainless steel pins to keep them in place. During the repairs last fall, S.A. Boyce Corporation fixed steel pins onto most of the bricks. But a few did not receive the treatment, including the one that recently fell.

Sutherland said the University will not pay for the new project. “If there would happen to be any further problems with the scope of work that S.A. Boyce Corporation did complete, the work and cost to take care of the issues would be done by S.A. Boyce,” Sutherland said. “Taylor University would not be asked to absorb any cost.”

Last time, Taylor used the general building, maintenance and upkeep budget because they did not set aside a fund for the project. Senior Anneliese Brincks wonders if the new repairs will reap any benefits: “They could try to fix it again. But eventually that’s going to be a money drain.”

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