Reinvesting in on-campus apartments

James Vaughn

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Housing renovations on campus have some students questioning whether its neccessary or not.

“Basically, what we’re trying to do is reinvest in the apartments,” said Housing and Residence Life Director Laurie Berry. “Different apartment buildings will be renovated on a schedule. We’re going to try to do three a year.”

Only the inside of the apartments were renovated.

“Looking at it from a construction standpoint, the buildings still have a lot of useful life,” Berry said. “But the inside looked dated. So from that perspective, we felt like we could start to go through and do some basic renovations.” Every year, all of the apartments are cleaned and given a fresh coat of paint.

But this year, Mortan and freshmen apartments 

Durbin, Hanley and Morton were completely renovated.

“What we did to those buildings was a deep renovation,” Berry said. “We took out floors and replaced all of the appliances. We gave it a completely fresh look.”

For the complete renovations, different contractors were brought in to handle the project.

“We worked very closely with the Physical Plant to decide, out of the 54 buildings, which ones it made sense to give that face lift to right away,” Berry said.

The money for the renovations came from the housing budget and the department’s reserve.

Ralston resident Jamie Callahan said they should have spent the money on the little things that really needed fixing rather than renovating entire apartments.

“The plumbing in my apartment is always messing up it seems,” Callahan said. “I mean, the toilets are falling apart.”

She also pointed out that the kitchen in her apartment is really old.

“We could use a new fridge because our handle is falling off,” Callahan said.

Durbin resident Adreeahna Bankston loves her fully-renovated apartment, but having spent some time in Durbin last year, she wonders why they chose to renovate it.

“Seeing Durbin last year, I don’t remember it being bad,” Bankston said. “There are other buildings that could have used the improvement. “

She’s not complaining though. “I love my new apartment because it feels like home,” Bankston said. “I don’t have to worry about things being old or not working. I’m happy that I got a newer place because I’ve seen my friends’ apartments; bless their hearts. They have to deal with odd smells, stains in the carpet and old furniture.” 

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