New dorms behind schedule
In the current escalating frenzy surrounding next year’s housing, the allure of the unknown grows. This unknown factor is the new, and yet unfinished, Union Street housing complex.
The project, started last year, is going to provide 132 upperclassmen with new village housing, something offered as an alternative to off-campus housing.
ResLife is expecting huge interest in the new housing.
“I think what’s going to be interesting is going to be how many seniors are going to try and scarf them up,” said Michelle Gross, associate director of Residential Life and Dining Services.
Village housing now consists of 19 actual houses with a total of 77 beds, the 20 person Elm Street apartment building and the 98 person Firelands apartment building. Molly Tyson, interim director of ResLife, draws a comparison between the apartment style Union Street complex and the apartments that already exist.
“I think the nice thing is it’s four individual bedrooms [per unit],” she said. “It’s a larger space than putting a new person into a two-person studio in Firelands.”
There are 11 houses being built on Union Street, three units per house. Each unit houses four people. Aside from individual bedrooms, attractions include a private bathroom and kitchen as well as the obvious telephone and network connection. Furniture will include one couch, two living room chairs, one kitchen table with four chairs and three kitchen counter stools.
There are two different layout types. One has a single entrance and has a more open plan, with the kitchen and living room blending into each other. The other has two entrances and a distinct and separate kitchen area. Like the residence halls but unlike the other village housing possibilities, the Union Street apartments are non-smoking.
Most of the units will be filled by people applying for group housing, but three units are single sign-up. These 12 people will live in the same house which, along with two others, will be quiet houses.
“The most popular option is singles,” said Gross. “If there’s interest, there will probably be more [single sign-up occupancy] next year.”
All village housing will be the same cost: $5,200 per year. A single in the residence hall will be $4,800 per year and a multiple occupancy will be $4,300 per year.
“No, we’re not on schedule,” said Tyson. “Yes, we are anticipating that they will be ready for the start of the academic year, but not for the early arrivals.”
These temporarily homeless early arrivals will be housed elsewhere on campus until classes begin, most likely in Langston or one of the other, relatively larger dorms.
“Because they’re 11 different buildings, not all of them are going to be ready,” she continued. “Now, it’s all weather-dependent. If it snows until mid-April, things will be different.”
Although the finished products are forthcoming, visuals are accessible. There is a display of the floor plans in the ResLife office and online. However, viewers should be warned that the houses displayed on the website are not the actual houses. They are simply houses that resemble what the constructions-in-progress are supposed to end up looking like.
“We’re struggling to get everything online,” said Gross.
“We hope to have all of the floor plans...the pictures, too, in case
people have specific houses in mind.”