After being under construction for nearly seven months, UCF will complete repairs and renovations of the iconic reflection pond just in time for graduation.
The reflection pond should be fully operational by Tuesday, May 1, after crews finish putting sod and testing the fountain to make sure it’s working properly, said Assistant Director of UCF Communications, Mark Schleub.
Workers had have already removed tarps covering the fence around the reflection pond and were putting down sod by evening.
According to a UCF press release, crews have been making repairs and renovations on the pond since Spirit Splash last October, to fix leaking pipes and damages caused by hurricane Irma.
Crews have worked hard the last few months to make sure everything was completed in time for graduation ceremonies, as it has become a tradition for graduates to take pictures next to the pond, Schleub said.
Workers installed a new concrete floor and fountain structure. Other upgrades were also added, including new color changing LED lights and more efficient fountain pumps. Repairs and renovations cost $1.1 million, according to an article by the Orlando Sentinel.
The Reflection Pond was first opened in 1970 to replace what used to be a natural pond turned muddy pit. Ever since, it has been one of UCF’s landmarks.
Many students graduating this semester were hoping to have their graduation pictures taken in the pond.
“When I returned to UCF in the spring semester, I was surprised to see the pond being renovated. My immediate first thought was hoping it would be open in time for my graduation pictures,” senior biology major Sara Abdelhameed, 21, said.
The announcement that the pond would be ready for graduations was a pleasant surprise.
“When I picked up my cap and gown, I saw an announcement that said the pond would be open in time for graduation pics. I was so happy… I thank UCF for its consideration for our class,” Abdelhameed said.