INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana University Board of Trustees has approved a request to proceed with the design and construction of a new 700-bed residence hall at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.
A site in close proximity to University Tower — IUPUI’s newest residence hall, with a state-of-the-art dining hall, at 900 W. Michigan St. — is being explored as a possible location for the new residence hall.
Currently, more than 1,900 students reside on campus. Even with the addition of University Tower, which officially welcomed students on Aug. 17, 2013, and offered residential space to an additional 560 students, IUPUI’s current housing is at capacity. More than 800 students are waitlisted, compared to more than 200 before University Tower opened.
“Each year we continue to attract highly qualified, first-time full-time students, and we are seeing a significant increase in the number of students who desire an on-campus living experience in Indianapolis’ downtown,” IUPUI Chancellor Charles R. Bantz said. “By creating a vibrant living and learning facility in the heart of campus yet near opportunities for internships, we will enhance student learning, promote student development and success, and support IUPUI’s educational mission and goals.”
Over a year ago, IUPUI retained a consultant to conduct a marketing and demand analysis to assess the general needs of the campus. As part of the analysis, on-campus housing was closely examined using student focus groups, a student survey, housing trend patterns and enrollment figures for specific cohorts.
It was determined that IUPUI requires additional on-campus housing to meet the growing need of its student population. This recommendation is also consistent with IUPUI’s master plan, which was approved by the board in 2011 and recommends the provision of more on-campus housing to attract, retain and engage students.
“Residential housing not only enriches the student experience, expands participation in campus life and helps instill a sense of campus pride and spirit, but also directly correlates to higher retention rates and grade-point averages,” Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Zebulun Davenport said. “Students are coming to IUPUI looking for an experience that will allow them to be competitive in the business world, and spaces like residence halls offer students the opportunity to engage in formal and informal networking opportunities, which increase their cognitive human relations skills and competencies.”
The total cost of the project is estimated to be $45.2 million and will be funded through revenue bonds repaid by IUPUI Housing Operating Funds ($41.7 million) and Campus Funds designated for this project ($3.5 million).
IUPUI will now seek approval from the Indiana Commission for Higher Education and the State Budget Committee for the 700-bed project. If approved, the campus will proceed with design, with completion of the project estimated in summer 2016.