A new residence hall for the University of North Georgia’s Dahlonega campus should be ready for students when school starts for the 2016-17 year.
“We are hoping the elements cooperate because it’s going to be a tight schedule,” Dr. Janet Marling, vice president for student affairs, said.
University Commons, which will consist of two buildings, will accommodate 536 students. She said some work remains to be done outside on the project.
Marling said the university wants, and needs, more residence halls, including expanding to the Gainesville campus.
But that requires approval from the Board of Regents and years of planning work. While she said some master planning is under way, a timeline for future building has not been set. There are no “immediate plans” for other housing projects, she said.
The University Commons is a new venture, a public-private partnership with the Corvias Group, she said.
She said it required approval from the Board of Regents and a lease between UNG and the company. The university owns the land and leases it for 60 years to the company. Corvias owns the building and operates it, Marling said.
Marling noted the agreement with Corvias is the first one of its kind. “We were the first round,” she said.
Students will pay their residence bills to Corvias, she said. The company does the maintenance and UNG will “staff the buildings.”
The new buildings are “suite style” with two bedrooms and a common area, she said.
Marling said Corvias also operates Owen Hall on the UNG campus, taking it over in July 2015.
UNG has had a policy requiring students to live in residence halls until they get 60 credit hours, which is through their sophomore year. However, “we have not had the capacity to meet that internal policy. …. Students have been given waivers.”
Even with the new buildings, UNG will not be able to accommodate all the freshmen and sophomores in residence halls, she said.