The Assistant Director of Facilities for Ground is responsible for managing the turf, both natural and artificial, athletic fields and trails, all of the hard surfaces, both sidewalks and roadways, flower beds and trees. The Assistant Director also assists the Director of the Natural Lands with the care and maintenance of the Natural Lands.
The grounds crew is the group first known on the St. Olaf campus as the “green army”. This group is responsible for a wide range of activities, mostly out of doors. However, they are also the college moving crew. This is the group that will move your equipment from office to office or across campus if you should be moved. We have staff that specialize in trees, planting beds, other types of landscape construction and equipment maintenance. Problems related to any aspect of the grounds should also be called into 3280. We have radio contact with the supervisor, and most problems can be dealt with very quickly.
The grounds operation has changed as much as any of the other shops over the years because we have built so much. New plantings, sidewalks, roads and drives, and of course, outdoor stairways have expanded greatly. All of this has added up to a lot more work for a crew which has remained stable in size for many years.
We have been able to keep pace with the requirements by adding equipment which allows the crew to be more efficient. This crew is presently mowing over two hundred and twenty five acres. At one time, part of the crew was assigned to indoor work during the winter. Because of the increase in outdoor hard surfaces which must be kept safe during the winter, the staff is no longer reassigned indoor work.