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Residence halls keep up with growing population

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Burleson Hall
Burleson Hall sits on a hill that will soon be home to new dorms with space to house 1,200 students.

Photo by Geoff Sloan | News Reporter

The Department of Housing and Residential Life plans to demolish and renovate buildings on campus to keep up with population growth.

DHRL operates the residence halls at Texas State which occupy between 6,000 to 7,000 students throughout the academic year. The need for renovated on-campus housing and more housing is necessary according to the department, with the student population breaking another record of 34,206 undergraduates.

Arnold, Smith, Hornsby and Burleson Halls are set to be demolished and replaced by brand new residence halls. The new halls will include 1,200 bed spaces and cost just over $132 million together.

Blanco Hall is undergoing renovations currently, but with no set completion date. This is the first set of renovations since the hall was constructed in 1987.

“The scope of renovations and improvements includes: upgrades of the building utilities infrastructure as well as upgrading the fire protection systems; updating the restrooms; minor modifications to the bedrooms; upgrading the community living rooms; repairing/enhancing the exterior; and improving the main entry area,” according to the DHRL website.

These changes to Blanco Hall have meant some temporary closures to parts of the building, unusable bed spaces and fewer Resident Assistants employed at the hall. Out of the 715 total bed spaces at Blanco Hall before renovations began, there are 375 bed spaces currently filled.

More information on the approved residence hall projects can be found on the DHRL website.

The most recently constructed residence halls have a higher price compared to the older halls. San Gabriel Hall and Angelina Hall had their first residents in fall 2016 and range between $3,950 and $4,935 for an academic year. Future residence halls will likely show an increase in price compared to older halls because of new amenities.

Nicholas Consoli, exploratory freshman, shares his feelings about what the on-campus living experience is like. While Consoli realizes that living on-campus can have its challenges, Consoli said he believes there could be an added benefit to having more on-campus options.

“Some benefits of living on-campus are definitely making friends and definitely that it’s a whole lot closer,” Consoli said.

Consoli believes that creating more options for living on-campus would extend these benefits to students like him.

Making friends and having a close proximity to academic buildings are not the only benefits according to DHRL.

“Students who live on campus have a 10-15 percent better chance of doing well in college than students living off campus. On-campus students have better grades, take more units and are more likely to persevere to achieve a university degree,” DHRL states.

DHRL states living on-campus is linked to a student’s academic success, therefore, making more and better on-campus housing a tool for academic success among students.

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