Student Housing Business

JAN-FEB 2018

Student Housing Business is the voice of the student housing industry.

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ON-CAMPUS HOUSING January/February 2018 72 longer time frame. This leads us to consider future flexibility and efficient use of space. In an effort to engage more with universities, the provision of space for normal university functions to be conduct- ed also provides an opportunity to take the cost burden off the uni- versities and bring these services into the housing space. Our recent partnership with Amazon to pro- vide all CLV properties with Ama- zon Hubs, an automated package service allowing delivery from all retailers and courier services including the USPS, is an example of how we are attempting to add practical technological solutions to reduce the use of our existing space in unproductive ways." "Deferred maintenance and mod- ernization has become more of a hot button topic across all college and university facilities in recent years," says Jay Pearlman, senior vice president of advisory services at The Scion Group. "Especially as it pertains to P3 projects, institu- tions are paying more attention to the longevity of construction, planned maintenance and capital improvements over the life of the project. Also with the high cost of adaptive reuse, the ability to more easily adapt a building to changing demographic trends and preferenc- es is increasingly important." At Texas A&M, the university is transitioning away from institu- tional type designs with a 75-plus year structure to buildings with a shorter lifespan with similar quality. "The likelihood is that many of these facilities will be repurposed prior to 75 years down the road," says Phillip Ray, vice chancellor for business affairs at Texas A&M University. "We feel this strategy will enable us to better accommo- date the changing demands of our students over time. We are con- tinuing to prioritize quality of con- struction, energy efficiency, living- learning space design parameters, future expansion and flexibility of the built environment, maintenance and operational aspects of the facil- ities to help control annual budget drivers in the future, and appropri- ate reserve funds to ensure timely refreshes of the facilities." Development Trends A shift towards focusing on ame- nity spaces that foster academic success is another big change in the design and delivery of on-campus housing today. "Aside from being more cost sen- sitive, the newer generation of col- lege student is entrepreneurial and focused on academic success," says Archibald of CLV. "They value time working with peers, but also their January is the coldest month in Marquette, Michi- gan, home to Northern Michigan University (NMU). The average monthly high temperatures are 25 degrees. But during the second week of January, when EdR moved approximately 400 students into NMU's brand new on-campus housing, tempera- tures fluctuated between 5, 9 and 34 degrees with subzero wind chills, not to mention the two to three feet of snow that was already on the ground. A mid-year winter move-in like this is unusual for EdR, but the university needed to open its new hous- ing as soon as possible to welcome new and transfer students. The opening debuted four new buildings and com- pletes the second of three phases of a $79 million housing replacement project at the Upper Penin- sula university. Phase one, which opened in August, included 417 beds. When the third and final phase wraps up in August 2018, EdR will have delivered 1,229 new beds, which will account for 50 percent of NMU's on-campus housing. The project also includes 3,000 square feet of university space and 1,200 square feet of classroom space. The new housing district, which is intended to enhance the first- and second-year student experi- ence, will be known collectively as The Woods. NMU currently enrolls approximately 9,300 students, who are required to live on campus for their first two years. To turn around the development project quickly and efficiently during the frigid months, EdR hired a construction consultant with local market expertise along with additional temporary staffing to ensure construction punch lists were completed, and stu- dents received essential communications and guid- ance to expedite the moves. As a special treat for students, EdR even hired movers for those students who were moving out of the older residence halls into the new buildings. When students returned to campus after the holiday break, all their belongings were waiting for them. The project architect is Neumann Smith and the contractor is Walbridge Construction. The development process happened transparently and in sync with other campus departments, stu- dents and visitors. To promote the project and keep everyone in the loop at all times, EdR provided "dusty boot tours" of model units in the new build- ings as they were being constructed. EdR also worked alongside NMU's residence life department to make sure students knew what to bring and what not to bring to move-in. An onsite kiosk helped provide marketing materials, 3-D ren- derings and floor plans, all of which were intended to give students the clearest picture of what the new housing would look like. The tours and kiosks came in handy during the university's Wildcat Weekends, which are open house events for prospective students to visit and learn more about life on campus. According to EdR Regional Director Bryan Shelangoski, the dusty boot tours even helped market the potential of public- private partnerships to other universities. NMU looked to EdR to transform the student experience on campus. To accomplish this, EdR used its own equity as part of the ONE Plan to develop the buildings; it will manage and own the buildings on land leased from the university for 75 years. The six new buildings are connected through a quarter- mile hallway capped by a communal gathering space called The Lodge. All the buildings are adjacent to the academic mall area of campus. "This housing will totally transform the campus for first and second year living," Shelangoski says. "The university is putting students first. That's the reason they've done this. They know that in order to meet students' needs, they have to offer even more solid, desirable housing." — Lynn Peisner EDR AND NMU STUDENTS BRAVE THE ELEMENTS DURING MID-YEAR MOVE-IN EdR has opened the second of three phases of development on the campus of Northern Michigan University. The project will deliver 1,229 new beds, which will comprise half the university's on-campus housing. PHILLIP RAY Vice Chancellor for Business Affairs, Texas A&M University

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