"How did we get A-420 as a clubroom?"
In 1994, RIT's yearbook, the "Techmilla," printed its last edition, and closed its doors for the last time. It was unfortunate that we lost our yearbook, but so many factors led to its demise, it's not even worth getting into here.
In 1996, the seeds were sown for what would become the RIT Model Railroad Club ("We'll come up with a better name later," I promised Tom). We had tapped Prof. Scudder to be our advisor. Prof. Scudder realized we would need a permanent home if we were to succeed.
Fortunate for us, Scudder had lunch with his friend Scot Lawson one day. Lawson was the Facilities Administrator- ie, the schools architect and planner who made sure that all our buildings and rooms were being used to the full potential, and that all needs were met. Lawson, a graduate of RPI, realized what an asset the model railroad club could be to RIT. The Techmilla office had been vacant for about three years at this point.
Lawson reccomended to Student Government that we get use of the A-420 room. Student Government, always trying to meet the needs of as many student organizations as possible agreeed- with a caveat. The new RITMRC could use the room as long as they agreed to share it with the RIT Aero Club (model airplane club). What choice did we have? We agreed and we were handed the keys to the A-420 in February 1997.
The room was spooky and confusing when we first entered. The whole room was set up as if the yearbook editors were going to return at any moment. Weird angles and slopes were everywhere. It was a challenge, but soon we had the room cleaned up enough to start work. The reason the R&IT model railroad occupies the footprint that it does comes from our careful measuring of what "half" meant. We measured out from the apex of the curve of the rear wall, then measured a straight line from there. Our office was shoehorned into a corner where the engine terminal is now. It was cramped, but we made it work. A couple years later, we realized that the Aero Club wasn't moving in, so we cleaned house some more, cleaned out the back room, and prepared for the installation of the staging yards.
~Otto M. Vondrak - Wait, didn't he graduate back in 1999? WTF??
R&IT Metro New York Region - Freight Sales Agent
Graphic Design '99