Carrington Hall

November 5th, 2012 at 2:00 pm by David Farrar

Saw this ODT article on my old Otago hostel:

The University of Otago will carry out earthquake strengthening at Carrington College over the summer holidays as it awaits the results of further assessments on some of its buildings.

The work at the residential hall Carrington College is part of a $50 million earthquake-strengthening programme unveiled by the university earlier this year.

At the time, Otago University chief operating officer John Patrick said it was hoped to complete strengthening work by 2019. After the first round of building assessments, only the Scott building – at between 25% and 30% of new building standard (NBS) for earthquake strength – was found to be earthquake prone.

Other buildings assessed in the round including the School of Medicine’s Lindo Fergusson building and Scott building, the arts building and the clocktower buildings were found to be less than the university’s draft target of 67% of NBS for its older buildings – meaning that work would have to be carried out to bring them up to that standard.

Since then, Linton House at Carrington College had been found to be earthquake prone – at 28% of NBS – in July.

Hmmn Linton House is the house I was in. Glad there were no earthquakes when I was at Carrington!

Mind you I may have contributed  to the lack of strength in Linton House. I heard about how the smallest room in the hostel (Linton 2) had a record of managing to get 40 or so people in it despite being something like 2.5m by 1.5m in size. It was called the closet.

I am competitive and like breaking records so tried to beat that one weekend. By having girls go on the shoulders of guys, we managed to fit 78 people into the room, which was truly impressive. We also had an ODT photographer perched on the top of the closet who managed to get a nice aerial shot of us in the room.

The photo appeared on the ODT front page, and not surprisingly was seen by the Warden who summoned me and went on at some length over breach of fire regulations, damage to the ceiling of the dining room (beneath us). My meetings with the Warden on such issues were semi-regular.

An earthquake during the 78 people in the room would have been very unfortunate. I suspect we may have made world news though, and possibly won a Darwin Award :-)

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6 Responses to “Carrington Hall”

  1. IHStewart (388 comments) says:

    Guessing that record will fall fairly soon.

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  2. RRM (9,769 comments) says:

    78 people at (say) 0.8kN / (floor area of 2.5m x 1.5m) = 16.6kPa or about one and a half tonnes per square metre… yes that’s some fairly significant concentrated floor loading!

    But if it didn’t collapse at the time, then I doubt you caused any damage…

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  3. tamati (70 comments) says:

    I’m sure we broke some record with a Jenkins room cram back in 2006 when I was there!

    Great hall, great times!

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  4. Stuart (41 comments) says:

    Great hall. I can certainly believe Linton is earthquake prone, apart from the fact it contains a lot of bricks, last time I saw it the vines had pushed through pieces of the outer wall/roof.

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  5. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    Pics or it didn’t happen.

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  6. Muzza M (291 comments) says:

    Was anyone at Carrington when that totally unreasonable Scottish bastard Stan Mair was warden.
    TFS (Top Floor Stuart) 1981

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