In 2009 the University unveiled its first new academic building in 22 years. Hyland Hall cost $41.5 million to build. It's filled with shiny banisters, sleek wood paneling, a cafe and several crippling design flaws that call into question the qualifications of anyone involved in the project.
The North side of the building has a large staircase, able to encompass both lanes of traffic. People can travel up and down without impediment. A problem, however, emerges when one considers that classes are held on both sides of the building, and the southern facing staircase is a sadistic abortion of architecture.
The southern side of the building, like the north, features on staircase. The caveat is that this one is half the size. When classes get out, people instantly bottle neck in the tiny stairwell, backing well down the hallway. The stairs are barely able to accommodate one lane of traffic, forcing people going up and down to grapple for control of their footing. No matter the time of day you try to go up or down the stairs, you will always be stuck by some stooge with a gargantuan tumor of a backpack, forcing them to walk like the hipster equivalent of some some mad scientist's assistant.
Sure, one could take the elevator. But that entails cramming yourself into a metal tube next to Bruno, the hapless muscle head who just ran 8 miles and wore his flimsiest tank top for your aromatic pleasure. These should not be my only two options. I should be able to travel on both sides of the building unmolested.
But there's also a problem with the bathrooms (at least the male ones). Hyland's bathrooms have been equipped with super sleek Dyson Air Blade hand dryers. This is all well and good. The problem is that they have been positioned on the wall adjacent to the door. This means less than a foot. Anytime anyone is drying their hands and someone enters, a strange soggy-handed shuffle must be engaged in. People are squeezing past each other in the most intimate of settings. Some people don't even wash their hands. I don't want to bump into those people. Keep those people away from me.
This could easily be avoided by moving a dryer directly across from the door instead of next to it. At least then one would have their back turned to the door. Or perhaps by removing a sink and putting a dryer in its place. Why are there 3 sinks but only 2 dryers to begin with? This leaves someone waiting awkwardly to dry their hands. Why not have 2 of each? Someone would still have to wait TO wash their hands, but that's better than waiting with damp hands, is it not? I feel like an idiot standing there with dripping hands. You should, too. Everyone looks like an idiot waiting for a dryer. No one knows what to do. You can't put your hands in your pockets - they're wet. There's no getting around it. This is a problem.
Better yet, why not have regular towels available, too? After all, there are large garbage bins in there. But they're always empty because there are no towels and thus nothing to be thrown in (spare the occasional candy wrapper). Who designed this? Why did $41.5 million dollars result in such a heinous building that clearly takes joy in regularly impeding my day-to-day operations?
There is no excuse. Hyland Hall has a faulty design. Period.