Equipment Distribution Center to expand

by Zoë Mathews / Beacon Correspondent • October 11, 2012

Tharp edc
The EDC is located in the lobby of the Little Building.
The EDC is located in the lobby of the Little Building.

In response to a steady increase in student population and demand for equipment, the Equipment Distribution Center (EDC) will expand its facilities across the hall, which will house film and photo equipment, according to the manager of the EDC ,Tim McKenna. If construction goes as planned, the storage center will open by the end of the month.

The new center, which will be called the Film Annex, will be located in the Little Building in the space that formerly housed the Print and Copy Center. It will accommodate a larger space for storage, include more service desks to reduce lines during the busy weekend checkouts, and provide room for an expanded tech area where inspections of cameras and  other devices are held upon return.

In its current location, the EDC is in one room of the Little Building lobby. The plan is to move all of the film and some of the cameras into the new space, so students who need to take out equipment from those programs can go to the Annex, and students who need audio devices or more basic packages can go to the EDC.

“I think it just makes sense,” said freshman visual and media arts major Carly Kaplan regarding the new Film Annex. “Different departments need different equipment.”

According to McKenna, the faculty, which decides what equipment is necessary for courses, has been purchasing more of them in due to the increase in students. He said that the EDC has gone from about 1,600 students that are using the equipment to 1,850.

The space at 98A Boylston St — where the Print and Copy Center recently relocated to — formerly held some storage for the EDC. When the Print and Copy Center moved locations from the Little Building to Boylston St. it left space for the EDC to move its storage into a more efficient space and provided the opportunity to renovate and expand, according to McKenna, who said the renovations are expected to be completed soon.

McKenna said he hopes the Annex will be open soon after renovations are complete to accommodate the incoming flux of students from film II courses. McKenna said it is the most complicated class regarding the type and amount of equipment students need to check out.

The floorspace in the new Annex is not completely level, so wooden panels have been installed to make sure the shelves do not tilt toward Tremont Street, as they would have before, according to McKenna.

Different shelves are being put into the EDC’s current location, because some of the shelves are wasting space, according to McKenna. The metal casing of the old ones are three inches thick, an unnecessary measure for the weight they are holding. The new ones will only be one inch thick, allowing for an extra shelf to be put in.

The EDC usually gets most of its reservations near the end of the week, especially on Fridays. The influx of students has caused an increase in lines to check out.

“I used the EDC for a few projects last year,” said sophomore visual and media arts major Denver Stoddard. “It was always really busy. I think the new room will get rid of how hectic the place was with people from different majors in the same room looking for different equipment.”

McKenna said that he values the importance of an efficient EDC at Emerson, and that it functions as more than just an educational tool for students.

“We provide a service to students, but they’re customers too,” said McKenna. “This will really improve the customer service, and that’s our mission.”