University acquires new property to house students
Managing News Editor
At the end of the spring semester of 2019, the university closed the Christiana Towers residence, which opened in 1972. The decision to close the towers was made due to increasing costs of maintenance and upkeep, as well as housing inventory and planning.
However, with the closing of the Towers, the university lost 1,250 beds for students. In order to combat this, the university acquired the Courtyard Apartments— which held 266 apartments that could accommodate 880 residents in units of various sizes. However, this still resulted in a net loss of beds.
“The university also took on what’s called a master lease for several apartments in the One Easton complex on Main Street, and a number of students are living there,” Andrea Boyle Tippett, Director of External Relations for the university’s Office of Communications and Marketing, said in an email. “Those students have RAs and access to all the programming available in the residence halls.”
A master lease is what allows the university to sub-lease properties in One Easton, located at 1 Easton Court next to Capriotti’s in the Newark Shopping Center, to students. These properties come with amenities such as a gym, a courtyard and in-unit washer and dryer machines.
As a result of this change in housing, students who applied for housing during the past school year were prioritized by their application date, with students applying in the fall holding the ability to self-select housing. Those currently applying toward the spring semester were given the lowest preference— with some given no ability to self-select at all.
However, they were all given housing.
“Residence Life and Housing was able to accommodate every student who wanted to live on campus and applied by the posted deadlines,” said Tippett.
In addition, the university also plans on repurposing Warner Hall as a counseling and wellness center, resulting in a loss of another 68 beds. Though they will not close this year, Sypherd and Brown Halls will also eventually close for a full academic year in order to replace existing air conditioning systems and create more rooms compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, according to Jim Tweedy, the director of residence life and housing.
However, with the closing of these buildings, the university also plans on building a new $80 million dollar dormitory located near Morris Library— to be named South College Residence Hall. However, this project will take three to five years to complete.
In addition to renovating residences around campus, the university is also taking part in other renovation projects such as a $60 million renovation of Delaware Stadium and the construction of a $156 million biopharmaceutical innovation building on STAR campus.