What is in this article?:
- A Larger Scale: 10th Annual Residence Hall Construction Report
- All the comforts
If "more" is the unofficial motto of the stock market's performance over the past few years, the same can be said about new residence-hall construction at colleges and universities in the United States.
Not only does it cost more per square foot, per resident and in total to build new housing facilities, but also today's residence halls are larger, accommodate more students and provide more square feet per resident. The total cost of a median new residence hall built in 1998 topped $4.1 million, according to American School & University's 10th annual survey of college-housing construction. And, at more than $130 per square foot, costs are at their highest level since this survey's inception.
A breakdown of the components of a median new residence hall constructed in 1998:
-Cost: $4.1 million.
-Size: 32,500 square feet.
-Cost/Square Foot: $130.51.
-Square Feet/Resident: 294.
Information for the 10th annual Residence Hall Construction Report was compiled as part of AS&U's larger Official Education Construction Report (published in May). Chief business officials at the nation's colleges and universities involved in a residence-hall construction project were asked to provide information about a variety of cost and amenities issues. Data were collected on 30 new housing projects put in place in 1998, amounting to almost 1.4 million square feet and costing approximately $203 million.
Table 1 breaks out information from lowest to highest, and by averages and medians. The editors recommend that when comparing costs and figures with those of your project, use the median figures listed. Medians are determined to provide more accurate cost and size variables than averages.
New residence halls constructed in 1998 ranged in price from a low of $1.5 million to a high of $28 million. The median project cost $4.1 million; the average cost more than $6.7 million. Project size varied from 8,025 square feet to 160,000 square feet. The median residence hall included 32,500 square feet of space, while the average project had 52,487 square feet.
The median new housing facility accommodated 120 residents. The number of beds ranged from 44 at the smallest project to 425 at the largest. Cost per resident ballooned to $29,205 from $27,200 in 1997. Colleges and universities realize the benefits of providing quality, sought-after housing on campus-and are sparing little expense.
Attention to the amount of space provided per student is not only being addressed in the classroom, but also in residence halls. Almost 300 square feet per resident is provided at the median housing facility constructed in 1998.
This is up from the 250 square feet of space provided per resident in 1997. The amount of square feet per resident ranged from a low of 73 to a high of 545. Square-footage costs reported for projects completed in 1998 varied from a low of $67 to a high of $514. The median residence hall cost $130.51 per square foot, while the average project cost $151.60 per square foot.