Cable move closes part of street

West First section shut off so wire can avoid work site

by Sally Claunch
The Shorthorn staff

West First Street is closed between South West and South Pecan streets until Saturday because of construction. However, students living in Richlyn Apartments, on the corner of West First and South Oak streets will still be able to enter their parking lot from West First Street.

Network administrator Tom Kennedy said the university is relocating an underground fiber optic cable that connects the Watson Building on Main Street to the rest of campus. The Watson Building houses Accounting and Business Services, and the cable is used for everything from telephones to security cameras, he said.

John Hall, associate vice president for finance and operations, said the cable runs from the east side of the University Center and across the site of the new residence hall.

Hall said the soil under the residence hall site shifts, and the builders will be excavating 4 to 6 feet of soil and replacing it with more stable soil. The fiber optic cable is being re-routed to run out of the north side of the UC to the Watson Building so it does not cross the foundation site, he said.

The construction is being handled by Fishel Co. contractors from Dallas. Hall said the construction will cost about $31,000.

Fishel Supervisor John Berka said the cable will be burried 42 inches below the ground. He said laying of the cable should be finished by Friday night.

Rusty Ward, associate vice president for finance and controller, who works in the Watson Building, said he has not had any problems with service from the cable.

"They told me that there wouldn't be any interruptions," he said.

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