BY JOHN CROPLEY, The Daily Gazette
SCHENECTADY — Union College is moving forward with plans to base campus safety officers in a former bank building on Nott Street.
Union received city Zoning Board of Appeals approval for the plan last week and will go before the city Planning Board next week. With the second approval in place, the college hopes to start renovations in December and take occupancy before the fall 2019 semester starts.
Union announced its purchase of the vacant and vandalized bank building in June 2017. It wasn’t until August 2018 that the next major announcement came from the college: The facility is to be named the Williams Center for Campus Community Safety.
The name honors Kelly Williams, a 1986 alumna who sits on the college’s board of directors and provided the lead donation for the project. The name also indicates a key aspect of the project: Getting Union’s 26-member security force out into the community around the college, and bringing the community into the security building for programs and events.
Director of Campus Security Christopher Hayen said his officers currently operate from the rear of the ground floor of College Park Hall, the former hotel-turned-dorm near the foot of Nott Street, where there is not much space to meet before shifts or big events.
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