Wednesday, March 05, 2008

More on the Housing Shortage

The Daily D's opinion page has seen a continuation of the housing discussion. Yesterday, Rachel Bernhard '08 raised the point that it made no sense to punish seniors, who are one of two classes on for all three terms.

I certainly sympathize with sophomores and juniors who have an erratic and often-changing D-plan. I’ve applied for housing from a different continent, I’ve changed my D-plan after the deadline, and I’ve been without a consistent roommate since freshman year. It sucks.

However, why should someone who may be on-campus once during the fall-winter-spring year have a stronger claim to a nice room than I do? Why can’t ORL help seniors find places that accommodate their needs? Trying to find, say, a single within walking distance of campus that costs something comparable to College housing with six months notice is more difficult than it sounds.

In today's paper, Corey Chu '08 gives seven proposals for alleviating the housing crunch. Here are a couple of the suggestions:

Second: create temporary housing. Although Treehouse-quality housing may incur mixed opinions, a sufficient number of students would likely choose sub-par on-campus housing over no on-campus housing at all. Let students have that choice.

Third: build dorms with more than four floors. If the College is constrained by too little building space and too many students, then the next logical step would be to expand vertically. If each additional floor could house about 20 additional beds, four additional floors distributed throughout the campus would be the rough equivalent of a standard dorm. If the College can work with the Town of Hanover to allow construction of bigger dormitories, we could house more students with the same amount of building space.

Chu also claims that the Mass Row dorms will be out of commission when the 10s are seniors. If that's true, it's pretty grim news.

P.S. Chu seems to misunderstand the new Princeton proposal in proposal #5. Their plan will not take 100 freshman off-campus, but rather give them a gap-year—in effect, postponing their enrollment for one year. This would alleviate the housing crunch only in the first year it was implemented.

P.P.S. If the administration knew a housing shortage was coming, why did they tear down all of the treehouses?


Anonymous said...

Another chapter in the saga of the Administration That Couldn't Shoot Straight.

How hard would it have been to predict this problem months ago? After all, the calculation is pretty simple: there is a finite number of dorm beds and a fairly predictable number of students. Each time ORL takes the decision to renovate a dorm, the relation between these two figures changes. Duh.

Wright has a special talent for hiring incompetents. I guess that it takes one to know one.

We really really really need a good new Pres. to clean house.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, let's all pile on the guy who's already announced his retirement.

The number of incoming students is not as predictable as you think, anon 5:51. It fluctuates by dozens or hundreds per year because a different and unpredictable proportion of admittees accepts each year.

Anonymous said...

"The number of incoming students is not as predictable as you think"

Hahaha! Hey buddy, it's March. ORL knew in November how many early admits went out, and the class will only be complete in the spring when April admits go out and then kids later respond.

So why are these jokers only telling kids now that they won't have housing for senior year at this residential College.

Occam's razor points to incompetent planning yet again.

Anonymous said...

"the class will only be complete in the spring when April admits go out and then kids later respond."

So they still can't know yet how many students will be living on campus next year.