The Casas del Rio project, which includes the four new residence halls now under construction just north of Johnson Field, on the University of New Mexico main campus, is already about 35 percent leased. The new buildings will add more than 1,000 beds to the campus and sophomores, juniors and seniors are already reserving space.
Freshmen who have been admitted for next fall to UNM can also choose whether they want to live in the new student housing or the current housing on campus. The new residence halls will be ready for occupancy in fall 2012.
Brent McPherson, area manager of the new housing, which is being built by American Campus Communities talks about the new residence halls.
ACC has a leasing office on the lower level of the Student Union Building with complete with a model of a typical two person room.
ACC is financing, building and leasing the residence halls. Construction cost is estimated to be $39 million which the company will recoup over the life of the buildings. This is the second housing unit ACC has built at UNM. Lobo Village on UNM’s South Campus is directed toward graduate students and upper classmen.
UNM has traditionally been a commuter campus with most students living at home or off campus, but the university is in the process of adding new housing in an effort to improve graduation rates. Associate Vice President for Student Life Walt Miller says research shows that students who live on campus are likely to be more focused on schoolwork and to graduate. With the addition of the new residence halls, UNM’s on-campus population will grow to more than three thousand students.
The campus master plan envisions renovation of current university owned housing and the addition of more residence halls in a continuing public/private partnership.