Preparing for the Fall Season

Facilities Management's Response to the Changing Season at UC Davis 

As we welcome students back to campus this fall, our focus at Facilities Management shifts in response to the changing season. In Northern California, the wet season typically spans from October to April, and while our winters in the Sacramento valley are generally mild, we must remain vigilant due to the possibility of heavy rainfall, as experienced in the previous season—the wettest in recent memory.
These weather patterns can have implications for our campus infrastructure and it has been forecasted that our region will experience another wet winter due to El Niño which is expected to continue through the winter. During one particularly intense rain event last winter, we encountered a substantial downpour within a short timeframe, leading to significant back-ups in storm drains. Unfortunately, this resulted in water intrusion in some of our buildings. Given the age of campus, we have older buildings that can be more susceptible to leaks. Occasionally, leaks may not be linked to the roof at all; instead, they may originate from various building components like deteriorated pipes, fixtures, valves and research equipment. When a leak is reported, it takes our technicians a bit of detective work to identify the source and determine what repairs are needed.
As part of our ongoing efforts to maintain our buildings’ integrity and functionality, Facilities Management works diligently to address potential vulnerabilities and minimize the impact of adverse weather conditions. We consistently track reported leaks, analyze causes and prioritize repairs based on various factors. During the fall and winter months, our roofing team is quite busy and ensuring the safety of our staff remains our paramount concern. Elements such as high winds or lightning may momentarily restrict or delay our ability to address roof leaks.


Facilities Management remains committed to staying proactive and adaptable in the face of evolving environmental demands. Our primary goal remains; to maintain the campus environment for the success of our UC Davis community.

Throughout the year, we actively identify areas warranting attention and have established preventive protocols to help our campus be more resilient. We continue to collaborate closely with building managers to strategically support known problem areas. As the summer months progress towards the upcoming academic year, preparations are made to accommodate increased staff, students, and faculty within buildings. This is generally when we experience a surge in requests for office refurbishments, assistance with event support and keys. We recommend submitting a request for keys at least 45 days in advance due to the volume we typically receive.
Over the summer months, prior to students’ arrival, we work to complete projects that may have an impact to instruction. Campus generally has less activity during the summer, but as a world-renowned research university, research and animal care continues all year, along with summer classes, events and recreational activities. This past summer, our building maintenance operations teams began five roofing projects which are slated to be completed in the fall. Eleven additional roofing projects are slated for next summer. Most roofing projects are prioritized based on various factors such as number of leaks and age of the building. These projects typically take place in the summer due to greater roof accessibility and lesser disruption to teaching and learning. Custodial has also been working on a number of projects such as deep cleaning of restrooms and floors, while our Utilities division has been working to upgrade underground high voltage cabling to improve our electrical infrastructure.