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Thursday, June 12, 2008

UI continues to fight flood, will remain open

University of Iowa President Sally Mason reiterated Thursday that the University of Iowa will remain open despite the ongoing flooding crisis. She said that while many programs and events are being moved or cancelled, the university, including University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, will still be open for business.

University officials have also urged all university employees—including those working in buildings on high ground or otherwise not directly affected by floodwaters—to prepare contingency plans should utilities become unavailable. Such utilities that might be affected include electricity, steam, air conditioning and water.

Numerous university buildings at river level are being closed Friday at 5 p.m. Don Guckert, associate vice president of facilities management, said teams are being compiled to assess the considerations of closing each building, including operations, security, information technology and whether the building needs continued air condition and ventilation until they are re-opened.

In order to evacuate as much as possible from the buildings, people are asked to keep campus and downtown roadways open by staying away from flooded areas and not driving on or around campus if at all possible. Streets that most need to be avoided are Jefferson, Madison, Market and Iowa.

UI employees are again urged to walk, bike or bus to work to reduce the number of vehicles on city streets. Employees who are interested in bike routes around town, or would like other information about bicycling, can visit the Iowa Bicycle Coalition Web site at .The organization has made itself available to help interested UI personnel.