New Language Lab Nears Completion

A $165,000 renovation of the language laboratory in Boylston Hall will be nearly complete when the lab opens for student use Monday, the project co-ordinator said yesterday.

Martha R. Richardson, assistant director of the Modern Language Center, said modifications to the lab include rearrangement of booths, tape storage and the control room, new cassette tape decks to replace the old reel-to-reel decks, and new walls and carpeting.

Four large study carrels are being added to house computer terminals for Arabic classes, as are new stereo headsets and tape decks for music listening, Richardson said.

There will be no orientation sessions for students using the lab, but instruction sheets will be provided in each booth, Richardson said, adding that there will be an open house for teaching fellows and faculty this afternoon.

Tighter Security

Tapes will no longer be checked out by name but by catalog number available in a card file, and security will be tightened by requiring bursar's cards of everyone using the facilities, Richardson said.

Richardson blamed the delays in finishing the remodeling on subcontractor's delays. She said the principle contractor, Minton Construction of Cambridge, had finished its own work on time.

Money for the project came from the Program for Science at Harvard College, Richard G. Leahy, associate dean of the Faculty for Resources, said yesterday. That program was the result of fundraising during the late '60s and early '70s specifically for capital improvements to laboratories and science buildings.

Leahy said the finished project will cost about $35-$40,000 for construction and remodeling, and about $125,000 for the new equipment.

Richardson said the new location of the control room--in the middle of the lab--will help divide the room and make it less like "a barn with little stables in it." She said the new arrangement would make it easier to hold a class in the lab without disturbing the individual study of others.