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Sunday, May 1, 2016

'Gates-gate'? Apparently not but DPU entry under review

Saturday, February 2, 2013

The new entryway to the DePauw University campus via Anderson Street off U.S. 231 is currently without the towering black iron gates that were installed less than a month ago. After negative campus feedback about the scale of the gates was noted, they were removed and have not been replaced or reinstalled. [Order this photo]
Ever since Woodward and Bernstein broke the Watergate story that brought down President Nixon and his covert operatives, headline writers and news commentators alike have routinely assigned the suffix "gate" to just about every controversy coming down the pike.

The Carters had Billygate. Reagan had Contragate. The Clintons had Whitewatergate. Politics had Nannygate. Heck, the NFL has even had Spygate.

And now, could it be Gates-gate at DePauw University?

Conspiracy theorists in town and on campus may think so since the Hoover Gates (named for the donors who funded them) have disappeared from the newly opened Anderson Street campus entryway off Bloomington Street (U.S. 231).

The towering black iron gates had been installed at the new entryway on Jan. 9.

Campus sources indicate the gates were actually in place for only a couple of days before being removed.

Ken Owen, executive director of media relations at DePauw, told the Banner Graphic he has been in contact concerning the status of the gates with Christopher Wells, vice president for strategic communications. Wells has been in Florida this week, attending the DPU Board of Trustees' winter meeting.

The official word via Florida, Owen reported, is that no final decision has yet been made regarding the gates' fate.

However, Wells did acknowledge that there had been negative campus feedback, Owen related, with gates of wrath notions coming from donors, students and even President Brian Casey, the media spokesman noted.

"Concern was expressed by a number of constituencies," Owen explained, "about the impression they (the gates) gave."

The prevailing negative notion was that "the scale (of the iron gates to the rest of the brick structure) was somewhat out of whack," Owen said.

The whole thing is "still a work in progress," he conceded.

"Obviously the project has been going on so long that you want to do it right. So it's under review, and we're analyzing what the next step might be.

"Who knows?" Owen suggested. "The gates may be back."

The Anderson Street project began last August and continued on into the early portion of January while the campus was enjoying Winter Term.

The large black iron gates, ostensibly the final piece of DePauw's new campus entrance, were hoisted into place a little more than three weeks ago by Dotlich Crane Services of Speedway.

Capitol City Ironworks crews then anchored the almost harp-shaped decorative gates -- designed never to close -- to the ground west of the brick pillars.

Anderson Street is now open as a two-way street from Bloomington to Locust Street. No parking is allowed on either side of the restructured roadway that funnels traffic into campus toward historic East College.

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I commented when the gates were first put up that they gave a "closed" feeling to the entrance. Apparently, even Dr. Casey did not like their look.

Just leave well enough alone and do not put up any sort of "gate" to the entrance. They only add to the misconception of a "closed" campus.

-- Posted by Lookout on Sat, Feb 2, 2013, at 11:46 AM

Just another way to waste money. It says they're decorative and designed 'never' to close... so it pointless, but they paid a company to put it in. Now they're gone bc everyone else thought it was a waste too. If they were going to waste that much money, they should have just donated it somewhere that could use the funds... like reopening the A-way home shelter.

-- Posted by localgirl2 on Sat, Feb 2, 2013, at 1:39 PM

Maybe Wabash needed them to lock up the Monon Bell!

-- Posted by Old White Republican on Sun, Feb 3, 2013, at 7:55 AM

Paint them white and call St. Peter to come get them ..

-- Posted by Emmes on Mon, Feb 4, 2013, at 12:01 PM

I have a little different view on the gates. I felt the idea of the gates never being closed sent the message of the University always being open and welcoming all to enter.

-- Posted by kbmom on Thu, Feb 7, 2013, at 1:00 PM

Its none of my business but I thought they looked very nice. I really miss seeing them there. They looked like they were meant to be.

-- Posted by harlan on Wed, Feb 27, 2013, at 7:50 PM

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