Written by: Bekah Friedberg, Braden Moore, David Sarkisyan, Josh Kong, Ruochen Yang, Victoria Bondar; student reporters
For the past six years, the University of Washington Bothell has been conducting demand studies related to student housing expansion or improvement. With the limited housing and amenities for UW Bothell students, they received positive responses to these studies after reviewing the data. UW Bothell decided to focus on rebuilding and expanding the housing to add beds and more opportunities for students.
Amy Van Dyke is a Director of Physical Planning and Space Management in the upcoming Husky Village Redevelopment project. “It’s been great just watching that program grow, and the interest grows and this opportunity to see it go from adding 270ish beds up to 1000 beds eventually when it’s all built out.”
UW Bothell is using a P3 plan, a public-private partnership with Capstone Development Partners, that allows the university to maintain ownership but lease to a developer that builds, operates, and manages the environment for 50-70 years. UW Bothell also teamed up with local Mahlum Architects and Andersen Construction to design and construct the housing.
Project Manager Harry Fuller said, “We went through a process of selecting a developer partner, which took several months, and we had a great list of developers that were interested in this project. We ended up selecting Capstone Development Partners as our partner, and they have teamed up with a local Architect Mahlum and a Contractor Andersen to design and construct the new housing for us.”
With a partnership made and a direction settled upon, UW Bothell plans to create and uphold a stronger campus presence designed for students to enjoy. The focus is on creating more residential space and amenities for the students and updating and expanding the design of the campus. This redevelopment plan will be put in physical motion later this August, with an estimated completion time of September 2024.
On May 7th, UW Bothell partners Anne Schopf from Mahlum Architects and Jason Jones from Capstone Development Partners unveiled their plans over Zoom to a small audience of students and faculty in the UW Bothell community. The Capstone presentation began by reviewing the guiding principles of the Husky Village Redevelopment project.
“As a team, we commit to making decisions that best serve UW Bothell students and improve the campus.” The 30 slides of the presentation contained detailed images and graphics depicting how the Husky Village will be transformed. Each new building, every walkway, sidewalk, and bus stop location has been carefully planned out. Interior design details for a dining hall, recreational spaces, laundry rooms, and study rooms were included.
Virginia (Gigi) Cassidy and Noah C. Carper, students and Residential Advisors for Husky Village, were able to see the Capstone presentation. Gigi said, “It’s very focused on connecting the students with the community and connecting the students with each other.”
As a student who lived in an off-campus apartment before living in Husky Village, Gigi said, “There really is a big benefit to living on campus…there’s more connection when you’re here because you physically are on campus and you still, kind of, feel like part of the campus community.”
After living in Husky Village for three years, Noah believes he has gained a bit of everything from Husky Village. “It teaches you to be prepared for the “real world” after college. So, you’re learning how to cook, and you’ve got to take out the trash. It teaches you the adult responsibilities that people get and those kinds of qualities they do encourage personal independence.”
Gigi stated that one of the key factors motivating development is the state of the existing housing facilities, “these buildings are really old and students don’t always take the best care of their living spaces. So, it’s been really well-loved by a lot of college students.”
Noah agreed with the same statement, “These halls are fairly old, though they have withstood the test of time, as they are still standing, and though they do still act very welcoming for housing people, that new redevelopment, it’ll be a modern take in which more people are encouraged to live on campus, more people can live on campus.”
The project isn’t expected to be completed until 2024, but Gigi and Noah stated that they will be proud of their school even if they will not be present to experience the completed project. “I think it will be a very good push toward future growth in Husky Village and by association, UWB,” Noah said.
Resident Director of Operations Manager, Afton Lopez, said the redevelopment of Husky Village will change the lives of the current and future residents. “We’re going to have six out of our eight buildings open. So two of our buildings, as of right now, are set to be closed, so that they can start doing the construction for the first building. That’s going to be the first to open.”
According to Harry Lee, the RA of Hawthorne Hall & Pine Hall, “The new buildings are going to be more of a Seattle dorm-style where they just have a bedroom and a bathroom. So we’ll have more rooms and can have more people live on campus, which is really cool.”
Living on campus in his freshman years, Lee said that one time, “It was snowing and there was just a lot of snow stacking up outside, and everyone was outside. We were just playing around and building snowmen. It was just really fun.”
Lee said that the pandemic made being an RA challenging. “I wasn’t an RA before the pandemic, but my roommate was, and I feel like it makes this job a little harder. As you know, you can’t meet your residents in person. So, some of my residents, because we had Zoom calls and cameras are not required so, we could go for a year without knowing what they look like. It’s just a little weird, and you have to have chats with them every two weeks, a quarter.”
The cost of the new apartments is expected to be the same as the cost of a student apartment in Seattle.
“The developer has identified the 2024/2025 academic year rates to be between $3,235 and $4,278 per quarter, depending on unit type. These projected rates are competitive with the surrounding Bothell market, comparable to UW Seattle student housing units, and within the range previously endorsed by UW Bothell students… Housing rates should be pretty consistent, and I think rates throughout a two-year cycle are reviewed. They go to the Board of Regents if they want to make any rate modifications or changes.”
Katie Horowitz, Director of Residential Life and Student Conduct at UW, Bothell, mentioned that in the past, some students could not get the opportunity to live on campus even after applying because the number of beds in Husky village was limited. Students will return to campus after the pandemic is over, and when they enter school in the fall quarter, the rebuilt Husky Village will have at least 300 beds per building to accommodate them.