The Piazza has been quiet lately, and not just because COVID-19 restricts group gatherings. The pitter-patter, splashes, and drips of MC’s picturesque fountain are missing, because the fountain is taking a much-needed self-care hiatus for restoration.
“The fountain disappeared quicker than D.B. Cooper,” exclaimed senior accounting student Riley Street, comparing the fountain’s disappearance to the perpetrator of an airplane hijacking in 1971.
A staple to the university’s aesthetic, the fountain has made cameo appearances in Follies videos and has been the focal point of various student pranks.
Dr. Tom Williams, executive director of campus operations, noted that the fountain was rusting, cracking, and peeling. “We are changing the ugly duckling,” he said, revealing that the fountain was included in the renovation and revitalization plan of Alumni Hall.
“The fountain was not broken at all,” Williams noted.
As part of the renovations, the old swimming pool was sealed and covered. The fountain’s pump was removed with the pool system during the summer construction. Therefore, the fountain was not functioning during the first month of school.
“There is a new metal box with a pump in it” outside Eighteen Twenty Sips, Williams said. Crews are “reworking some inner parts in the stem, pipes, tubes, and connections. We are replacing the old with the new.”
The fountain will also be getting a new coating, and the cracks in the base will be sealed.
Restorations to the fountain will not be completed for another few weeks, Williams said.
Until construction is complete, rubber ducks and excess soap will have to remain homeless.