Residential Suites phase II nears completion

By Aaron Castrejon

The $88 million Residential Suites project is nearing completion
after two years of construction and is scheduled to be finished by
late May, with only two remaining structures needing further work
to be completed.

Overall, the suites will house a little more than 1,000
students.

Once completed, the suites will be the fifth-largest housing
project in the CSU System, said Christi Chisler, associate vice
president of Student Affairs, in a Polycentric article.

The suites are part of the administration’s effort to change
what some perceive as the campus’ commuter school image.

The administration cites studies from 1991 and 1993, which
correlate student success with living on campus.

The inclusion of WiFi connections and a keycard entry system are
two features the suites will offer that stand, said Eric Rollerson,
associate director of Housing Operations.

Rollerson also touted the environmentally friendly construction
of the suites.

“We have a lot of green space ” and a lot of mature trees,” said
Rollerson. “We spent a lot of money on that. It’s going to be a
nice, friendly, warm environment.”

Those who will live in Vista de la Luna or Vista de las Montanas
may feel uneasy, as foul balls from the adjacent baseball field fly
towards the suites every now and then during games.

Officials have taken that threat into consideration and have
built a higher net to prevent some of the foul balls from
encroaching on the suites.

The windows facing the diamond are made of a special double-pane
glass, which, when struck, will shatter outward, preventing
injury.

The apartment-style suites will also house the same amenities as
the Village and dorms do, with stovetops, refrigerators, microwaves
and garbage disposals, but will not have dishwashers or ovens.

“We didn’t want them to be apartments,” said Rollerson. “But
they can be converted.”

Rollerson recognized potential problems with filling spaces
given the reduced target enrollment, which Cal Poly slashed by
nearly 1,700 students for 2009-10.

He said that the recent University decision to require Tier II
students, who live outside the local area, to live on campus for
one year will not only help fill spaces but bring a greater sense
of community.

University Housing Services is in the process of contracting
dorm and University Village residents who may want to live in the
Suites.

Current students get first priority, said RollersonThe contract
process involves filling out an application and taking part in an
online selection process in which they choose from a number of
rooms and floor charts.

Chris Bashaw, a first-year communication student, lives in
Alamitos Hall and will move to Vista de la Luna.

Bashaw initially had reservations of coming to Cal Poly.

“I’ve been struggling with the feeling that Cal Poly didn’t have
what I wanted when I came here, but I can say that those feelings
were premature,” Bashaw said after experiencing on-campus life.

However, he believes the administration’s requirement of Tier II
students to live on campus for one year is unrealistic.

“At the same time, it feels unfair to [students] who can’t get
financial aid or who would want to live anywhere else,” Bashaw
said.

More information about phase II of the Residential Suites can be
found at:http://www.csupomona.edu/~fpm/planning/projects/residential_suites_ph2.html

Reach Aaron Castrejon at: news@thepolypost.com

Residential Suites phase II nears completion

Pedro Corona/Poly Post

Residential Suites phase II nears completion

Residential Suites phase II nears completion

Pedro Corona/Poly Post

Residential Suites phase II nears completion

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