A newspaper for ECU faculty and staff
Pieces of Eight

Construction began in mid-September on the new Trustees Fountain, which is on the site of the former fountain on Wright Circle. The old fountain was removed when decaying utility lines caused the structure to begin sinking. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

Construction Begins on New Fountain at Wright Circle

By Jeannine Manning Hutson

Almost two years after the removal of the original, a new fountain on Wright Circle is emerging.

The chain link construction fencing went up in late August, the sod was removed and a bulldozer began moving dirt to start construction.

The $1.18 million project was undertaken when decaying utility lines caused the original fountain to begin to sink. Sink holes had appeared around the fountain, and the structure itself could not maintain necessary water levels.

The original fountain was removed in early 2007 as crews repaired and replaced storm sewer lines and steam tunnel drainage and reworked the utility layout of the area around Wright Circle and near the Spilman Building.

The original Wright Fountain was dedicated in 1932 to honor Robert H. Wright, the first president of what’s now East Carolina University.

The fountain was rededicated in 1951 to honor Martin L. Wright, director of the Department of Social Science, who served as chair of the campus beautification committee for 15 years. Wright applied his passion for gardening and landscaping towards beautification of public areas of campus, including the fountain and surrounding landscape.

The new fountain will honor current and former members of the ECU Board of Trustees, who contributed money to the project. The ECU Board of Trustees voted in 2006 to change the name of the campus landmark.

The Trustees Fountain project is expected to be completed in early December, according to information from ECU Facilities and Engineering Services.


This page originally appeared in the Oct. 3, 2008 issue of Pieces of Eight. Complete issue is archived at