Students in the Lloyd Hall Scholars Program were finally able to return to their former home this fall as the newly-renovated Alice Lloyd Residence Hall opened for residents.

The renovation came to fruition as a result of the Residential Life Initiatives program, which began in 2004 as an effort to revitalize the student living experience at the University. Construction began in March 2011 and included enhancements to the Lloyd Hall Scholars Program, a learning-living community focused on the arts and writing, and to the housing experience for many first and second-year residents.

The renovations focused on implementing aesthetically pleasing accents and efficient details, and the air-conditioned rooms are adorned with a variety of colors and new furniture, in addition to wireless Internet available throughout the building.

University Housing spokesman Peter Logan said the majority of parents, students and faculty seem pleased with the renovations.

“The community spaces, as well as some of the class spaces, are just so much better than we had before, and I think that has really impressed both the students and the faculty,” Logan said “Everyone is looking forward to a really exciting year.”

Logan said renovation went as scheduled, and construction was finished in the majority of the building in August when residents moved in. New dance and fitness studios are not finished, but will be complete within the next few weeks, Logan added.

LSA sophomore Jamie Nadel, who lived in Couzens Residence Hall last year and now lives in Alice Lloyd with fellow LHSP students, said he likes how the residence hall reflects the character of LHSP, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.

“I thought it was very interesting that they decided to make it look very 60s, because that’s when the building was made, and that’s when the LHSP program started,” Nadel said. “ … I think they’re really trying to go back to that style and engross us in this idea of the anniversary. That is a really interesting portion of living here.”

He added that the dorm is very “eclectic” because of the variety of furniture, colors and designs.

“All of the rooms are big and beautiful and just amazing looking. I don’t know how they could have made it better,” Nadel said.

Though Alice Lloyd does not have a multipurpose room for large group gatherings like Couzens did, LSA Sophomore Jamie Monville said there are plenty of other spaces, such as study rooms and lounges, to use for group work.

LSA freshman Taylor Sullivan said that since classes haven’t started, many of the new study rooms and lounges have been empty.

“I think it would be better if there were more people here. There are never people in the lounges,” Sullivan said. “I think everyone is new to it, and a lot of people don’t know where to go. Hopefully, there will be more people out and about throughout the year.”

Sullivan said she also had the opportunity to see the new, six-person suites while participating in Move-In Makers — a program where students arrive on campus early to assist other residents moving in — and was impressed with the rooms.

While the number of University Housing spaces was a concern for many students last winter, Logan said no first-year students were displaced due to the construction on East Quad Residence Hall, which housed approximately 850 students last year, and the closing of Baits I Residence Hall, which housed about 570 students.

Though no students were displaced, there were about 400 fewer bed spaces this year. However, most returning students who completed a housing application this year were able to still live on campus after Northwood apartments I and II were converted from housing for graduate students to housing for undergraduate students.

“It probably wasn’t, for many of them, their first choice. Although there are a number of the sophomore and older students who do like the apartment living, so it worked out fine,” Logan said. “Those who wanted to stick through the sign-up process and live on campus, we were able to find a place for them.”

Logan also said the housing committee was able to make up for unavailable space by converting Northwood III into a housing community for first-year students, and Housing is currently working to add wireless Internet access in all Northwood apartments.

Logan said the renovations on East Quad are on schedule, and the building is planned to re-open in the fall after a 15-month renovation.

The University’s housing staff has also been doing preliminary planning for future renovations of other residence halls as part of a continuation of the RLI, according to Logan.

“We feel there is an opportunity to do some considerable work in South Quad Residence Hall, and we’re looking at opportunities to do renovation work within West Quad Residence Hall after that,” Logan said.

He added that Baits II also received many renovations over the summer to improve community spaces, including the addition of a fitness room, a theatre, a piano lounge and a room with a green screen.

“It’s been an extremely busy summer,” Logan said. “The work done by housing staff in maintenance, custodial service, and of course housing planning and design has just been phenomenal. They have put in an Olympic effort this year.”

Editor’s note: A duplicate quote was deleted from this article.

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