Home News Local News ENMU-R electrical line work begins today

ENMU-R electrical line work begins today

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Work to replace the main electrical line for the Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell campus begins today. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

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Replacement work is expected to close campus for two weeks

Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell campus will be even more quiet this winter break than usual.

While the campus closes shortly before Christmas until after New Year’s each year, the time is extended this year while the main electrical line serving most buildings on campus is replaced.

The $1.2 million project funded by the state begins today, with electrical service expected to be restored no later than 7 a.m. on Jan. 2, when the campus is scheduled to resume normal operations.

Additional work related to the project may continue beyond that date but is expected to be completed by mid-January, according to ENMU-R President Shawn Powell. 

While security personnel will still be on campus during the extended break and electricity to buildings will still be available periodically during some days and during evenings after 5 p.m., the unavailability of electricity means the university’s phone and internet will be down during the break. People sending email to ENMU-R addresses will have their emails returned as undeliverable, and phone calls to most campus landlines will not go through. 

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Powell said the work is essential, as the electrical line — installed when the property was part of the Walker Air Base — must be upgraded to ensure the campus is not without power during crucial times. The electrical line serves all buildings on campus except for the aviation technology building and the student dormitories, he said.

The work involves replacing 28 utility poles along Mathis Street from Gail Harris Street to Earl Cummings Loop and will be done by Norris & Son Electric Inc. of Clovis. Powell said the campus considered putting the lines underground, but had determined that would cost about two times as much as the above-ground lines. 

When completed, the new electrical line will be an improvement to the campus in that it will offer redundancy so that an outage of one part of the system will not take down the entire line, said Tony Major, vice president for business affairs.

During the campus closure, current students can register online using the ENMU-R website: roswell.enmu.edu. Prospective students are asked to wait until after Jan. 2 and preferably Jan. 6 to talk to advisors and complete registration. ENMU-R also plans to hold a registration event Jan. 8 prior to the Jan. 13 start of classes, Major said.

Donna Oracion, college development director, added that, if necessary, updates to the situation or schedule will be provided by alerts to current faculty and staff and by website and Facebook announcements.