May 2, 2003

Students Seek Storage Options

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Cornell will no longer allow students to store belongings in their dorms over this summer. Instead, storage services will be handled by Big Red Shipping and Storage, a division of Student Agencies.

Until this year, students were allowed to store up to two small boxes in the dorm that they would be living in during the next semester. There was no charge for this service.

According to Patrick Savolskis, manager of the housing and dining office, this system was plagued with problems which necessitated its privatization.

“The service we provided was quite limited. We usually ran out of space [and] we could not store for any student moving off campus,” Savolskis said.

After deciding to hand over storage responsibilities to a private company, the University went through a bidding process and the contract was given to Big Red Shipping and Storage. Students will be able to use the new storage service in several different ways. Items can be dropped off at residence hall service centers or students can opt for door to door service for an additional fee.

Though free storage will no longer be offered to students living on campus next semester, Savolskis feels that the benefits of the new system, both to students and to the University, outweigh the loss of free storage.

“The department moved to do this after looking at what it cost us to provide the storage both in dollars and in [the] services we were providing. After we polled several other universities of comparable size, we decided that looking for a vendor was the best option,” Savolskis said.

According to Big Red’s website, prices for storing items vary depending on the size of the item to be stored and whether items are dropped off at a service center or picked up through their door to door service. A small box weighing up to 35 pounds dropped off at one of the service centers will cost $15 to store over the summer. A “television box” weighing up to 70 pounds will cost $55 to store. Items stored using door to door services are priced per pound at rates ranging from 90 cents to $1.80 per pound.

Many students are unimpressed with the storage service Cornell is offering through Big Red.

“I intend to find any means necessary to avoid using Big Red Storage,” said Dave Wang ’06, explaining that he felt that the rates charged were too high. He also expressed skepticism about the value of services provided through Cornell.

“I don’t think anything Cornell gives you is a good deal,” Wang said.

Archived article by Daniel Palmadesso