New Dorm Building in the Works

Plans to Build New Residence Hall for 2014

NewResHallPlans for another student residence hall are in the making at the University. Construction will begin in the spring of 2013 semester and open in the fall of 2014 for sophomore students. Further changes will be brought to campus in result of the residential hall.

Vice President for Administrative Services, Patricia Swannack stated the residential hall will be built in Lot 6 near the library and confirmed the hall’s opening in fall 2014. “Lot 6 is close to all the halls with the exception of the Garden and Great Lawn Apartments. There are limited utilities to relocate which saves money and there are not any local residents that could be negatively impacted by building a residence hall at this location,” said Swannack.

According to Associate Vice President for Student Services, Jim Pillar, the new dormitory will primarily house sophomore students. “Our goal is to make sure that the new building will ensure that every first and second year student will have a bed on campus,” said Pillar.

Associate Director of Housing Operations, Raymond D. Gonzalez, who viewed the floor plans, explained the rooms will be similar to Elmwood. “It’s a good size, your traditional corridor style,” said Gonzalez. The hall is expected to be equipped with air-conditioning and have primarily double rooms with possibly a few triple rooms.

The Hawk’s Nest convenience store now located in the student center will be moved to the first floor of the residential building, “It is my understanding that the convenience store in the Student Center will be closing and an extension will be opened in the new hall,” said Swannack.

The convenience store will have an exit and entryway to campus so it will be accessible to all students, not just residents of the hall. Pillar said, “The new convenience store would help with the University’s goal of getting effective meal service on the North campus.”

The Hawk’s Nest convenience store in the new hall will continue to be run by Aramark. Edward R Gomez, Sr. Food Service Director of Aramark said, “It will be more up to date with newer equipment and more space to offer a larger variety of items”.

Some students such as senior Emily Blanchette worry what effect building a residential hall on Lot 6 will have on parking at The University. “I think that another dorm is necessary, because many sophomores are forced to move off campus due to lack of housing. However, Monmouth already has a parking issue. If they are going to build a new dorm on top of a parking lot, they should build a new parking lot as well to counteract this issue,” said Blanchette.

Swannack stated MUPD monitors parking spaces every two hours to report how long a space is occupied. According to these reports, due to students entering and leaving campus at various times there are allegedly enough parking spaces for students. As for the spaces that were in Lot 6, “Parking for Library users and non-resident students will be accommodated in Lot 23 and in areas on the North Campus,” said Swannack.

In order for students to safely enter the Library from Lot 23, there will be a walkway built. Swannack stated, “As part of the Library and Residence Hall Zoning applications, we proposed constructing a pedestrian walkway from the corner of Norwood and Cedar Ave at a 45-degree angle to the front of the Library. The walkway will be very similar to the walkway in front of Wilson Hall and will include several benches for students to sit.”

According to Pillar, students are not expected see the cost of the upcoming construction impact their tuition. “Residence halls’ over the long run pay for themselves,” said Pillar. Currently, a name has not been decided on for the residential hall. In the meantime, students and faculty of the University can anticipate for the future addition.

PHOTO COURTESY of Suzanne Moore