At the beginning of this semester, University Student Housing ran into difficulties organizing students into residence halls as a result of increased enrollment. To remedy this situation, MSU hopes to consolidate resources to build a new residence hall for students. At the last Board of Regents meeting, on Nov. 17 and 18, MSU requested $6 million for planning and design of the new building.
According to the official request item presented to the board, University Student Housing has been able to meet the needs of incoming freshmen but has been operating at or near capacity for the last 10 years. As a result, its flexibility to accommodate upper-classmen in the residence halls, and perform renovations, has been limited.
“Montana State has seen consistent enrollment growth over the past 12 years, up 23% since 2010,” said Mike Becker, MSU's spokesperson. “During that same period, MSU has consistently invested in student housing renovations and new construction projects, totaling over $110 million to date.”
Despite the recent openings of Hyalite and Yellowstone Halls, both were overbooked upon opening, according to the official request. This request comes as students struggle to find affordable housing in Bozeman.
“Funding necessary for the planning, programming and design of the facility will come from Auxiliary Services revenues,” said Becker. “By state law, no taxpayer or tuition dollars are used to fund housing, dining, parking or athletics facilities on the campuses of the Montana University System.”
The request was voted on and approved by the Board of Regents on Friday, Nov. 18, moved by Regent Norris Blossom.
Editor's note: This story has been corrected to note that the $6 million in funding is approved to plan and design a new residence hall rather than build one.