8.19.21: Building Access Updates

A message sent to the Lehigh campus community

Dear Members of the Lehigh Community, 

In preparation for the new academic year, university leaders have been reviewing Lehigh’s building access policy with the goal of enhancing the ease of access and supporting the full scope of campus activities that are resuming, while also continuing to keep in place the protocols that keep the community safe.  

Prior to COVID, nearly all academic buildings were unlocked from morning until late evening. Only a select few buildings were accessible to students on weekends. Many have expressed a desire to access these spaces for studying at later times and on weekends. 

Our revised building access protocol provides a combination of open access times for academic buildings during the morning and afternoon hours, with expanded evening and weekend hours accessible by Lehigh ID to maintain security for those working and studying in academic buildings outside of regular business hours. 

Students, faculty and staff should continue to keep their Lehigh ID on them at all times. All campus community members and visitors must continue to follow all required health and safety protocols. Students, faculty and staff who received approved medical and religious exemptions from Lehigh’s COVID vaccination requirement will continue to be required to complete a COVID symptom self-assessment and participate in mandatory surveillance testing to access any campus spaces. 

Effective immediately:

  • Most academic buildings will be unlocked Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. These include: Whitaker Lab, Neville Hall, Maginnes Hall, Wilbur Powerhouse, Christmas-Saucon Hall, Chandler-Ullmann Hall, Williams Hall, Coppee Hall, Iacocca Hall, Mohler Lab, Seeley G. Mudd Building, Sinclair Lab, STEPS Building, Fritz Lab, Sherman Fairchild Center for Physical Sciences, Packard Lab, Coxe Hall, Drown Hall, and Building C.  
  • Most academic buildings will still require card access Monday through Friday from 6:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 7:00 a.m. until 11:00 p.m. 
  • Some non-residential buildings will implement a different schedule than the academic buildings mentioned above. For example, The Clayton University Center will remain unlocked Monday through Thursday from 6:30 a.m. until 11:45 p.m., as well as during hours on Friday (6:30 a.m. until  9:45 p.m.) and Saturday and Sunday (10:00 a.m. until 9:45 p.m.), and the libraries will have extended hours when they are accessible by card swipe. Other buildings with special hours include the Rauch Business Center, Alumni Memorial Building (employees with access and Admissions personnel will maintain 24/7 card access), E.W. Fairchild-Martindale Library, Linderman Library, and Zoellner Arts Center. Check the full list and the associated hours on the Lehigh University Police Department (LUPD) website or the respective locations’ websites.
  • Some specific non-residential buildings will continue to be programmed for card access only for those students, faculty, and/or staff who require access to that building. These include the Philosophy Building, IMBT Labs, Cundey Varsity House, Carol & John Covert Pavilion, 416 E. Fifth St., Jordan Hall, Building J, 125 Goodman Drive, the Offices at 3rd & New Sts., and the Flatiron Building. 
  • Residential buildings will continue to be accessible to residents by card access only. 
  • Anyone planning events on campus that require unlocked doors after 6:00 p.m. on weekdays or on weekends may submit a request to the IDEAL office for programming.
  • For more detail on hours and identified buildings, visit the LUPD website.
  • Please note that many of the buildings available for weekend access are integrated into the university's energy conservation program, which means that at times of more limited use, such as weekends, the heating and cooling settings are reduced, which may make spaces noticeably warmer or cooler than during weekdays. 

All personnel who have been granted special access to specific buildings will continue to have that same access. For example, many staff and faculty members and graduate students previously required 24/7 access to offices and labs. These special permissions will remain in place.  

We hope this provides some additional flexibility for members of the campus community to fully enjoy Lehigh’s beautiful campus spaces and have access to every place at every time they need, while also maintaining a safe and secure environment in this new academic year. 

For specific questions, please contact the IDEAL Office at (610) 758-6175 or inideal@lehigh.edu


Jason D. Schiffer

Chief of Police

Lehigh University Police Department