Phase one of Senior Village breaks ground
By Stephanie Sexton, Staff Writer
At the end of last semester, YHC broke ground for the construction and development of the Senior Village, the newest addition to YHC housing. The Village will eight million dollars for the first phase to be built, which is set to open in Fall 2011.
The first phase consists of eight buildings, all apartment style living for the students. The total number of beds available for the first phase will be 148. The apartments will be set up with four, single bedrooms, two bathrooms, a full kitchen, and a living room.
As far as laundry goes, Dr. Sean McGreevey, director of Residence life said, “There will be a unit in every apartment, so you will have your own washer and dryer.”
McGreevey continued to discuss how living in your own room in your own apartment could be an isolating experience, and Residence Life has always been centered on bringing students together and creating a community. These factors help enhance a students’ overall experience at Young Harris College.
So what are they going to do to help keep that community feel with students living on their own?
They have split up the apartment complexes into two separate communities, have lots of green space in front of each building, lots of landscaping, and the apartments are not going to look like “cookie cutter” complexes. Also, there are going to be porches on the front and back of each building.
With all of the amenities and special features to these apartments, a student’s expectation is that the cost of living there will be higher than any other hall.
“You can certainly expect that it will cost more…but it will follow the tier system. It will make sense,” said Susan Rogers, vice President for Student Development.
The budget will not be approved until later this semester at the Board of Trustees meeting after graduation. There will not be a set price until then.
However, Rogers did say that they would have a ballpark figure of what it will cost when students go to the housing lottery later this semester.
Parking for the new residence hall may be a bit of an issue though, since YHC will be adding 148 beds, but not much parking.
“Our expectation is that this new parking lot on Maple Street will be the main parking. We will manage the parking for that residence as part of the larger residential parking,” Rogers said.
Part of this dilemma is contributed to getting that ‘home feeling’ to the apartments. YHC did not want to put big parking lots in front of the apartments, when there could be plenty of lawn space for students to play.
As far as dining goes, the hope is that students will cook in their own kitchens; however, the Balance Café will most likely be popular for people living in that area. A meal plan is not finalized yet for the students.
“What we are working on right now is an alternative meal plan for the people in The Village. The people in The Village will be on the meal plan, but because they will have full kitchens, we will give them the option of a lesser plan, a cheaper plan, than the meal plan everyone is on,” Rogers said.
While YHC is working to finalize plans for this new addition to YHC housing, YHC is still in the first few phases of the whole project. A lot of decisions have not yet been made or solidified as far as policies go, but the expectation is that by Fall 2011 everything will be set and in working order.