Vice President for Student and Campus Life Ryan Lombardi, discusses a proposed new housing plan which would create new developments on North and West Campus.

November 10, 2016

VP Lombardi Proposes Housing Expansion on North, West Campus

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Vice President for Student and Campus Life Ryan Lombardi introduced the Student Housing Master Plan proposal, which would include four primary development sites on North Campus and three “secondary” ones on West Campus, at a Student Assembly meeting Thursday.

The construction would begin in the fall of 2018 and open to students by fall 2020.

The plan will “prioritize broad-range” housing and attempt to guarantee on-campus housing for freshmen, sophomore and transfer students, according to Lombardi.

“Once more housing space is available, we hope that freshmen students won’t need to be assigned to the Townhouses,” he said. “The goal is to offer more sophomores the option of staying on North Campus.”

The plan further includes a “residential trajectory” — a proposal outlining the plan’s ultimate goals of providing first-year students with a “centralized North Campus experience” and sophomore students with a “greater variety of housing options,” Lombardi said.

For juniors and seniors, the plan emphasizes off-campus housing options, as total of 1,180 upperclassmen students live on-campus, according to Lombardi.

Lombardi added that he hopes to update the dining and recreation on North Campus and “provide greater housing for themed group living.” He also called for the University to address maintenance issues at campus residence halls like Balch Hall, Risley Hall and the Gothics on West Campus.

“We are ultimately hoping that if more freshmen move out of the townhouses, [then] we can repurpose the townhomes for Greek or themed living,” he said.

Lombardi also suggested creating a “sophomore village” on North Campus, “distinct from West Campus,” as a means to emphasize the community aspect of living on North.

“To accommodate all freshmen and sophomores and keep juniors and seniors at their steady state, we can add more than 2,000 bed spaces on campus,” he explained.

Lombardi acknowledged that this is “an aggressive attempt and plan,” but he said he hopes to improve the student experience of living in a residential community.