If there is one thing Emerson students are accustomed to seeing, it’s scaffolding. I don’t remember a time that Emerson’s campus wasn’t dominated by rows of scaffolding that hang ominously above as you wait to cross at the Boylston-Tremont intersection. Scaffolding has been a fixture outside the Little Building (LB) for a long time now. This is to be expected, given it’s an old building desperately in need of some sprucing up. Thankfully, Emerson will begin the renovation process of LB next semester. Starting in January 2017, though, the lower-level of the building will be closed. This means that both the campus fitness center and the Cabaret (at least in their current locations) will be closed as well.
On November 9th, an email was sent out to students letting them know about these changes for next semester. As the email says, Emerson was able to secure a temporary facility for the fitness center and the Cabaret near Downtown Crossing. Beginning next semester, this new venue will be at 52 Summer Street/Arch Street—close to CVS, Primark, Roche Brothers, and other businesses frequented by Emersonians. Though this new location isn’t quite as close to campus (unless you live in Paramount, then it’s probably a welcome change) it’s good to know students will still have access to these facilities, just in a new space. All’s not lost, and if you’re hoping start exercising after New Year’s, you’ll still be able to do that nearby.
Another email, also speaking to changes related to LB’s upcoming renovations, was sent to the Emerson community on December 2nd. Since LB will be completely closed at the end of the spring semester, the college will be renovating part of the bookstore to make space for the Emerson College Police Department (ECPD). In preparation for that, the Emerson College Textbook Annex has been opened at 10 Boylston Place. Located on the ground floor of the Tufte building in the Boylston Place alleyway, the Textbook Annex is where students can return, sell back, or purchase textbooks. You can also pick up orders made on the bookstore’s website, as well as buy other miscellaneous items. Do you love buying sweatshirts and other clothing items that say “Emerson College” on them? Don’t worry, because you’ll still be able to do that at the bookstore’s normal 114 Boylston Street location, which will continue to remain open.
Currently, Emerson’s campus is undergoing some pretty big changes. And that’s not a bad thing, but with the sheer number of projects being worked on, it can be difficult to keep track of them all. With that in mind, I thought it’d be helpful to briefly describe some of these other construction/renovation projects happening at Emerson, so that you can stay in the know.
First, the school is hard-at-work on a new campus dining hall. Most of us know about the promised Dining Hall, but there are some community members who still don’t know the chosen location of the new two-story dining center. The dining center is currently being built near the corner of Walker Building, and the construction process can be easily seen during your daily commute to and from classes. Work is also continuing on the Boylston Place residence hall, which is set to open its doors in Fall 2017. Since LB is being closed at the beginning of next year, though, Emerson is renting space off-campus near Fenway to house all freshman and sophomore students.
It’s going to be interesting to see how the Emerson campus changes within the next few years. Since there won’t be a housing lottery for juniors and seniors this year, all upperclassmen now need to move off campus. But, once LB reopens in 2019, it may be possible for the majority of Emerson students to live on campus. Time will tell.