For more than two weeks, students have had to find a new way to navigate the HUB.
The Office of Physical Plant (OPP) has been working to rip up the HUB's center stairs, which OPP spokesperson Paul Ruskin said had become a safety issue.
Ruskin explained that age and heavy usage contributed to wear and tear, allowing water to seep into the space between the stairs and their old cast iron "nosing," or front edges. The water caused the metal covering to lift off the cement stair and become a tripping hazard.
"Ten out of 23 needed immediate attention," Ruskin said.
Paul Politza, Penn State's Renovation Services manager, said new metal coverings have been ordered from a local company called HC Hoodco Inc.
The new metal coverings are to be made of aluminum and are expected to arrive shortly, Ruskin said. He also said they expect to be able to reopen the stairwell by early to mid-August.
Student response to the closing of the main stairwell in the center of the HUB has been mixed.
Sean Mulcahey (senior-mathematics) and Matthew Doherty (senior-mathematics) both agree that the HUB stairs being closed is merely a "minor inconvenience."
"Its frustrating, but they have to work sometime. I guess summer is the best time," Doherty said.
Danny Monterroso (senior-biology) agreed that the situation was frustrating but "not a big deal."
Jay Petraitis, a junior, however, said he doesn't even enter the HUB anymore.
"It used to be a shortcut to me. Now it's just a waste of time," Petraitis said.
Ruskin said that the main way that services are placed on OPP's agenda is by requests from specific colleges or OPP units out doing other repairs.
The HUB does not fall under a specific college, so the responsibility was passed to individuals to report the problem. Therefore, it's possible the HUB stairwell, though in a high-traffic area, may not have been reported right away, Ruskin said.
"What happened is that people tend to assume that somebody else reported it."