The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

Pipe leak displaces students from William Street Apartments

2 min read

Nine students were displaced after a pipe cracked in Building 7 of the William Street Apartments (Photo courtesy of Noah Strobel / The Blue & Gray Press)


Senior Writer

A cracked pipe in the William Street apartments on Sept. 5 has displaced several residents.

The nine students who were affected were told they would need to clear out of their apartments by Sept. 9 so the damage can be properly repaired.

“The pipe had cracked and was leaking inside the wall,” said David Fleming, assistant dean of Residence Life and Housing. “Three apartments in Building 7 were affected.”

Kiersten Laclede, a junior and historic preservation major, was one of the residents affected by the incident.

”We had just finished putting up our decorations a few days earlier and were feeling good about the apartment and being roommates,” Laclede said. “So being called and finding out we had to move out in like three days was a lot to handle – a lot of tears and screaming and ‘Siri call mom.’”

Hannah Goad, a senior economics major, was another resident displaced due to the damage.

“I can’t speak for my roommates, but it has been stressful. Hopefully, repairs are done quickly and we can move back in soon,” Goad said.

Neither Laclede nor Goad reported having their personal items ruined from the cracked pipe leak.

“There was no external leak on our floor, so none of our belongings were damaged,” Goad said.

The displaced residents were given a couple different choices for their temporary relocation.

“Students had options within our available inventory,” Fleming said.

If students wanted to keep the members of their apartment together, they could take an unoccupied suite in a residence hall.

“We were moved to Marshall and did stay together,” Goad said.

The second option was to stay in the William Street apartments but be split from their roommates and randomly assigned to different rooms.

“I had the option of staying with my two roommates and moving into Marshall, where we could all still room together, or split us up and move in with different roommates in the apartments,” Laclede said. “We had no interest in living in Marshall, so me and my roommate moved in to different buildings in the apartments, and my other roommate moved into Jefferson.”

The affected residents were given differing time frames of when they could expect to return, which caused some initial confusion.

“When they initially called us they said we would be displaced for 3-4 weeks, but then we got an email a couple hours later saying that we’ll be displaced for the remainder of the semester,” Laclede said.

“We have been given multiple estimates of time, the most recent and shortest being three weeks,” Goad said.

Fleming has been in communication with the University’s facilities department to understand the extent of the damage and in turn solidify a more accurate date of repair.

“Facilities has indicated the contractor has made good progress and anticipate about two or three weeks before repairs are complete,” Fleming said. “Besides replacing the pipe, some wall and flooring will be repaired or replaced.”