Tuesday, October 7, 2014

People, People Everywhere Without a Place to Sleep



By Meliah Macon

SAN MARCOS - The record-breaking increase in student enrollment has a significant impact on space accommodation for incoming and current students on campus.

The university has broken enrollment records for the 17th consecutive year, with an enrollment of 36,700 students for the fall 2014 semester.  With the amount of students coming in, one of the main problems arising is the lack of living space for incoming freshman.  People seem to have a positive attitude about the growth except for the lack of space.

Brianna Jennings, junior, agreed that the university should continue to grow, but the there needs to be something done about accommodating space in the dorms.

“They definitely should keep growing, but they need to accommodate more people with housing,” Jennings said. “They should tear down and rebuild the older dorms and make them bigger and better, and they just need more dorms in general. They should also build more parking lots or maybe a garage. Mostly if there’s (going to) be more people, they need more dorms.”

The university makes it imperative that freshman live on campus during their first year.

Esperanza Estrada, freshman, said she was personally affected by the increase in students because she lives in an overcrowded dorm.

"The dorm I'm living in right now is supposed to be a room for 2, but they put 3 of us in there, so it's crowded," said Estrada.

President Denise M. Trauth said something about the lack of space the campus faces as numbers continue to rise, but she also shows a positive attitude about more people wanting to attend Texas State.

“Although our growth poses some space challenges, what's also telling is that Texas State has become a top destination among prospective college students,” Trauth said.

Junior Rachel Thigpen said the university needs to keep up with the amount of students applying to the university and make sure there is space for them.

“Education is really important, but they need to fix the problems with them not having enough housing and with the shuttle routes. They should build more dorms and keep building more housing with the more people they have,” Thigpen said.

The university is aware of the space problem and has plans of renovation of old dorms and construction of new ones underway.  Construction cost for Blanco Hall renovation is projected to cost around $25,003,415 and a new dorm, Moore Street Housing, will cost the university around $59,834,337.

One student voiced concern about tuition fees going up with the increased number of students because of the construction for building new facilities.

"Well, it might be harder to get to class...and also the tuition fees will go up. Seems like the more students the more fees we have to pay," said Adamma Ohueri.

Not only has the university recognized the space problem, but the community of San Marcos has as well with building many new apartment complexes close to campus. 

Two students living off campus have noticed this increase in population and how it affects the city of San Marcos. They said there are new apartments being built and it changes the landscape significantly.

"I live in a condo behind the new 817 Lofts that are being built, so the entire street has been taken up by construction. I think it's sad to see all of this construction in the area, since I know what it used to look like," said Kelly Phan.

"The quality of the town is deteriorating. I know of a project that was going to start for a building going up being 9 stories high, the height would be 5 stories above what the Texas State Star is,” said Warren Stoddard.

To see upcoming projects for dorms and other facilities for the university, visit the university website for campus construction:

http://www.fss.txstate.edu/planning/fac_pln/construction.html

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