Unity Plaza could become the new home for events previously held in Library Plaza as early as fall 2015, according to a Georgia State Student Government Association (SGA) resolution.
Resolution 1502, also known as “Removal of noise in Library Plaza and renovation of Hurt Park,” was approved on Feb. 26 during SGA’s General Senate Body meeting. The resolution was proposed on Feb. 12 by the organization’s Senator of Arts and Sciences Andera Ezell.
In order for the resolution to pass, 1502 will need to be approved by the University Senate and signed by Georgia State’s President Mark Becker, according to Ezell and SGA Executive Vice President Sebastian Parra.
Ezell said she had multiple motivations for proposing the resolution.
“My biggest concern and motivation was the noise and distraction students face while in the library during plaza hours,” she said.
Ezell also said she was concerned about Library Plaza’s atmosphere during class breaks or Plaza Time.
“Another concern was congestion and intimidation many students face because of the amount of people that congregate in library plaza as is,” she said.
Ezell said the move to Unity Plaza, the space in front of the Student Center, would not diminish Library Plaza’s current environment, according to Ezell.
“I think students [who] want to be around the noise and energetic environment will be able to do so in Unity Plaza,” she said. “But those students [who] want to be in the library or enjoyed Library Plaza or go to class will be able to do so with less students in their way.”
Jovan Paige, the vice president of Student Life, said he believes students would benefit from plaza’s scenery change.
“There is no way to quantify the amount of students who will be negatively affected by the relocation of plaza,” he said. “However, many students [allude] to an excitement with possible easier navigation to class and a more ‘persecution-free’ area.”
Ezell and Paige also said they were concerned about non-student disruptions of Library Plaza events.
This concern is mentioned in the formal resolution and the document states that students are intimidated by, harassed by and made to feel persecuted by religious protesters.
Paige said Resolution 1502 may provide students with additional comfort to enjoy Georgia State’s campus culture.
“This is the best move for students because it will allow for students to feel more comfortable while still enjoying a history of campus culture,” Paige said. “This change may improve the comfort level for students on Tuesdays and Thursdays and will also garner an opportunity for more feasible study experiences.”
Noise-making devices, such as disc jockey booths, megaphones and loud speakers would be prohibited in Library Plaza if the resolution receives university approval, according to the formal SGA document.
As a result, the Student Code of Conduct would also be updated to reflect the plaza changes, as noted in Resolution 1502.
Under the updated Code, individuals or groups would not be able to block students from walking through Library Plaza or disrupt normal University activities. Additionally, actions that could threaten student health or safety will be prohibited.
How do you feel about Unity Plaza becoming the new “Plaza”?
Major: Marketing Year: Sophomore
“I kinda understand, but I mean, you really don’t hear the music unless you’re at the window in the library. I’ve done it before. And [there’s] not as much room over there, so it’s gonna be way more traffic over there. So I don’t know how that’s gonna work.”
Major: Speech Year: Senior
“I feel like it’s gonna change the routine of the school. We’re use to being out in this plaza. It could be a good thing, but it’s definitely gonna change things around.”
Major: Undecided Year: Sophomore
“I kinda use that to get underneath [Library Plaza] quickly, so that might be kind of annoying. But this is already a big crowd.”