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Salient. Victoria University of Wellington Student's Newspaper. Volume 31, Number 9. May 21 1968

Block criticised

Block criticised

There has been some criticism of the new lecture block at the south end of Easterfield building.

Some distraction to students and staff was caused when the building was not finished before lectures started.

In one Criminal Law lecture, several students narrowly avoided injury when a heavy light fitting dropped from the ceiling.

All fittings have since been securely fastened.

Most complaints concern aspects of the building's design. The double swing doors at the back of each theatre and the very small mezzanine floor at the entrance to the top theatre have been criticised as bottlenecks.

The unnecessarily large foyer space and the small main entrance to the block have also drawn some comment.

When questioned about the new block, Dr. Culliford, the Vice-Principal, said that the authorities were pleased with it.

He said that most of the building's shortcomings could be explained. It is only the first stage of a larger building, resulting in some necessary compromises.

Because of this the mezzanine floor was only half the size it would be when the block was completed.

Similarly the doorways were carrying more than their normal traffic.

He said that the double doors at the top of the theatre and in the foyer comprised statutory smoke lobbies in the case of fire.

The fact that they are propped open for convenience may negate any advantage of fire control, he said.

Answering a criticism of acoustics, Dr. Culliford said that the architect had sat in on two full days of lectures which he considered had fairly tested the sound qualities of the theatre.

It was felt that the cause for criticism may have been the lecturers rather than the acoustics, he said.