Covert Ops in Hes East

“Yeh you can go up there” the guy laying the paving told me, “just don’t step on any of the gravel.”

This was fine by me. I clearly couldn’t go up here, in fact, I’m fairly confident Hes East is a closed site. Clearly my blasé attitude, long winter coat and notepad hadn’t alerted the poor workmen to my unauthorised entrance. That, or he really didn’t care. Either way, I was in. The elusive Hes East was my oyster.

From the top of the hill it looks rough. Like a building site, a proper building site. The type where things always seem to be going on and nothing going up.

To be fair, only the nucleus and accommodation is finished, but I can’t help but think that Goodricke freshers aren’t going to care whether their immediate surroundings are finished when they’re woken up at 8am after a night in Ziggys by the sound of the law department being built.

The accommodation, as expected, is quite nice. The designer clearly had a problem with right angles though; the rooms are not rectangular, but rather slightly strange funnel shapes – undoubtedly making intoxication even more exciting. The rooms are nice though, as is the general area and posh posh kitchens, complete with long dining tables, hanging fittings and breakfast islands.

Feeling like some sort of Bernstein/Holmes crossover (but with the covert skills of the guy with the phone off of Trigger Happy TV) I managed to sneak out my Blackberry and snap a few pictures.

The following pictures contain colour combinations never even imagined before. Viewer discretion is advised

Let me draw your attention to the delightful pink building which the people in design clearly thought Goodricke students would enjoy. Also of interest is the peculiar shape of one of Goodricke’s corridors. Do note the rather fetching cranes looming over the bedrooms of Kenneth Dixon Court.

Although I did gain access to a bedroom, there was no way to sneak a camera out. I can report that Goodricke’s 600 residents will undoubtedly be living in luxury, although noone seems able to tell me when that luxury will stop being in the middle of a building site!

10 comments

  1. 3 Oct ’09 at 1:20 am

    Stephen Patrick O'Ryan

    I’m happy in the knowledge that I will not be living on Hes East, merely because I like my sleep and can think of nothing worse than living on a building site that is a 15 minute walk from anywhere else in the university :) Have fun Goodrickers!

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  2. Yeah the times the building work can go on is very limited, so unless you’re a bat problems sleeping aren’t really going to be an issue (which means that I may be in trouble living there lol). The double glazing should help with the building noise, and I believe the pile driving has been completed.

    Jim the odd shaped rooms that you accessed are the clusters on the ends of the blocks. The corridors are straight and the rooms are square for the most part. (In case that’s something that would bother you).

    If you’d of asked anyone of note they could tell you that this phase of building on Hes East is scheduled to be complete by the start of the 2010 academic year. So you’d expect the building site to be gone by then.

    The pink on the main block will fade (mercifully), over time.

    I’m moving in on Sunday. Can’t wait!

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  3. For the record, if you want a better set of photos, look here:

    http://www.new.facebook.com/album.php?aid=321654&id=802985156&ref=mf

    or here

    http://www.new.facebook.com/album.php?aid=324295&id=802985156&ref=nf

    I’m not sure why you felt the need to be so covert Jim. Every time I’ve been over I’ve wandered around snapping pics of everything from beds to muddy builders.

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  4. “Like a building site, a proper building site. The type where things always seem to be going on and nothing going up.”

    That’s the impression I’ve got every time I’ve gone past it, it doesn’t seem to have changed for quite a while. It looks like it’d be nice inside (similar build to some of the Leeds Uni and Leeds Met accommodation which is always modern and good quality), but personally if I was driving up on Saturday/Sunday I’d be a bit demoralised by all the cranes etc – not exactly very homely!

    “If you’d of asked anyone of note they could tell you that this phase of building on Hes East is scheduled to be complete by the start of the 2010 academic year. So you’d expect the building site to be gone by then.”

    Yeah, cos we always finish things on schedule in York – in my two years I can namedrop the new Vanbrugh which wasn’t finished on time, the Langwith/Derwent new buildings and the HERC building…

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  5. “Yeah, cos we always finish things on schedule in York – in my two years I can namedrop the new Vanbrugh which wasn’t finished on time, the Langwith/Derwent new buildings and the HERC building…”

    Well the Goodricke buildings have been completed on time. In fact one of the blocks has been completed ahead of schedule, allowing all members to move in without having to spend a few weeks in temporary accommodation.

    I think the builders have pretty big financial obligations to complete on schedule with this one.

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  6. Yeah, but after the first phase in 2010, there’ll be a second and third phase – last I heard Hes East was going to be a building site until 2014 – but knowing the Uni that’ll be like 2016 imo! (not that any of us will be around to see it unless we take up PhDs).

    Plus, very limited building hours? I read somewhere that the hours were actually something like “8-5.30” Monday to Friday and “8-1” on a Saturday. So not that limited… As someone who lived in Alcuin when the K-Q blocks were being built, the building work is very disruptive!

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  7. Once phase one is complete the building site next door should be far less of an issue for Goodricke residents, simply because it won’t actually be right next door. (This is assuming phase 2 does indeed start immediately after completion of 1, which I don’t think is too likely at the moment.)

    8 – 5.30 is pretty limited imo, considering they’ve been working around the clock up until now.

    I think we’ll have to wait for impressions to come back from residents on how disruptive it is. We’ll let you know.

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  8. “’m happy in the knowledge that I will not be living on Hes East, merely because I like my sleep and can think of nothing worse than living on a building site that is a 15 minute walk from anywhere else in the university :) Have fun Goodrickers!”

    Very true Mr Halifax.

    But of course, judging from your facebook status, you’re too busy being concerned about the nationality of your next housemate…

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  9. 5 Oct ’09 at 2:15 pm

    resident at Goodricke

    … go visit the site and then criticise, stop driving past and looking at the tallest object in the sky cause funnily enough, the building is on the ground.

    BAM have been working and I haven’t heard a thing.

    Photos in this blog are honestly crap ! lol you should have got your photographer to take them, your covert camera man need some serious training.

    Can everyone also stop believing what they hear and hunt the real facts, and you can go there and see for yourself for free on the number 6 bus ! every 10-15 min outside Heslington hall on Church Side.

    http://www.york.ac.uk/campusdevelopment/

    :)

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  10. 11 Oct ’09 at 4:09 pm

    james bloody bond

    its not a closed site you bloomin’ idiot! Well done for sneaking on to Hes East, its akin to sneaking into the bloody library

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