Construction of new housing, renovations currently underway
January 15, 2008 —
Seven new townhome buildings are under construction near Pine Grove that will allow for more students to live on campus next year.
According to Assistant Vice President of Campus Facilities Steve Hocquard, construction of the additional housing began in November and will finish completion before the 2008 fall semester. Originally, the buildings were intended as "theme" houses, including four houses with 34 beds in each. The four buildings would have a large common area, small laundry areas, and individual bedrooms.
"The students that would have stayed in them would have been part of a designated group based upon the 'theme,'" Hocquard said. "This might have been any type of group such as an honors house, Spanish language house, pre-med, almost any group you could envision."
However, the plans exceeded SVSU's budget and the cost was too much for each student resident. The buildings will undergo a conversion to look like the rest of the living arrangements on campus for students to live in.
"The alternate plan was to construct 164 additional beds using the University Village style floor plan, which is what we are now doing," Director of Auxiliary Operations Ron Portwine said.
Four students will live in each unit with six units in each building.
Plans to renovate the Freshmen Suites are also in the works for future semesters.
"Whether that can happen depends somewhat on the demand," Hocquard said. "We hope we can get down to at least six per suite this year but there is no guarantee."
According to Portwine, the goal is to reduce the amount of students living in one unit. Two bedrooms could be designated as single bedrooms and the other two will remain the same, with two students sharing one room. Adding a kitchen area and making changes to the living and bathroom areas are also possible changes.
Hocquard added that bathroom and living area plans include refinishing the shower and toilet areas, as well as changing the carpet.
Portwine mentioned that there are still obstacles to overcome before going ahead with any renovations.
"It is a bit too early to be able to say what we will be able to achieve," he said. "We currently have an architectural firm working on a plan and cost estimates."