Townhouses planned to ease housing crunch
November 30, 2009
Bryan College plans to break ground in January 2010 for construction of a 66-bed student townhouse complex, with construction to be complete by the opening of school in August.
President Stephen D. Livesay said the townhouse units will provide much-needed housing and will be the first phase of planned development of the northwest side of the campus.
“This project serves several needs of the college, the greatest of which is residential space,” he said. “I believe it will also provide an attractive first view of the campus as visitors drive up the new entrance.”
Tim Hostetler, vice president of operations, said this year 16 rooms in women’s residence halls have been converted to triple occupancy, and six rooms have been tripled for men. “We anticipate an increase in enrollment next year as we are adding golf for men and women, softball, and cheerleading,” he said. “The alternative to building (new facilities) is increasing the number of triples or simply telling students ‘we have no room for you.’ Looking at those alternatives made adding 66 beds look reasonable.
Lower level floor plan
Plans call for construction of two row-house style buildings, one containing seven two-story units and one with five. Buildings will have the same brick and precast concrete features as other buildings on campus. One of the units will be for the complex’s resident director.
Each unit will have three two-person bedrooms, two baths, a kitchen, and living room. The units will be furnished with beds, dressers, desks, chairs and living room furniture; and living rooms will have access to limited cable television.
Upper level floor plan
Cost for the project, designed by Lewis Group architects of Knoxville, is estimated at $1.6 million. Mr. Hostetler pointed out that this is less than half the cost of Robinson Hall, the newest residence hall opened in the fall of 2006, and provides more than half the 120 beds in that building.
“This is an opportunity for us to help our students as they transition from college students to independent adults,” Dr. Livesay said. “Upper-level students living in these townhouses will not have to be on the meal plan, and they will have living rooms where they can entertain friends. I think it’s a great intermediate step from a residence hall situation to independent living.
“The townhouses provide a brand new option for students that will prepare them for housing situations they are likely to experience after graduating. This new option also gives an opportunity for students to develop closer relationships with five other townhouse mates than they can in our residence hall options.”
Dr. Livesay said college residence life staff and students are working on standards students must meet to be eligible to live in the new apartments. “There may be requirements such as grade point average, the number of academic hours they have earned and a review of any disciplinary matters for students who wish to live there,” he said.
Construction of the townhouses follows the Vision 2020 campus development plan, but with modifications, Dr. Livesay said. “Vision 2020 always has had apartments to be located at Bryan Village” on State Route 30 east of the campus. “With the new entrance, this provides an opportunity to build the new complexes without giving up the married student housing in Bryan Village.”
Dr. Livesay pointed out that the decision to locate the townhouses on Landes Way, the official name for the new entrance, came as work on the road was delayed by the economic downturn this past year. The site for the housing originally had been planned for a softball field, but the field has been relocated adjacent to the new units.
“During the past year we have revised our plans and actually have taken steps to provide additional parking for current needs and building sites and infrastructure for future development,” Dr. Livesay said.