College Planning & Management

JUN 2012

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LIVING ON CAMPUS GRAPH A The differences by size of residence hall, location, and governance do not seem signifi cant, but when it comes to cost per student and cost per sq. ft., there are some surprises. One would expect that less costly residence halls would install fewer bathroom facilities and expect students to share, but this does not appear to be true. The nine residence halls costing less than $48,000 per student expect 93 percent of their students to share bathroom facilities with no more than three other students. Among the nine residence halls costing $95,000 per student or more, more than half the students are expected to share bathroom facilities with more than four other students. Among residence halls costing $150 or less per sq. ft., three- quarters of students will share bathroom facilities with three or fewer other students, while in those costing $265 per sq. ft. or more, well over half will share with four or more students. As the King of Siam is said to exclaim (in the play The King and I), "It's a puzzlement." The ques- tions and answers need more examination. A Decade of College Residential Construction Every year for the last 10 years, College Planning & Management has conducted a survey of residence halls that had just opened or were about to be opened. Infor- mation is sought on their size, cost, and amenities. Each year, 40 to 50 cooperating institutions and their architects (out of about 100 contacted) provide that basic data. Since there is no control over who responds, where they are located, college size, or governance, year-to-year compari- sons can be dangerous. But with 10 years of data in the bank, it is possible to draw some conclusions. During those 10 years, data was collected on 427 residence hall projects housing 171,000 students in 57M sq. ft. of build- ing. Total estimated cost of the projects was a little more than $13B, and that does not include spending on at least as many residence halls at colleges that did not respond to the requests for information. $260 $240 $220 $200 $180 $160 $140 $120 $100 $80 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 GRAPH B Median Cost per Bed $80k $70k $60k $50k $40k $30k $20k 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 GRAPH C Median Sq. Ft. per Bed 360 340 320 300 280 260 240 220 200 2003 2004 34 COLLEGE PLANNING & MANAGEMENT / JUNE 2012 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 WWW.PLANNING4EDUCATION.COM 2011 2012 2011 2012 Median Cost per Sq. Ft.

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