Though students were expecting to see NEIU’s first residence halls just a block away from the main campus, a recent change in plans will now have the buildings on campus and ready for use by the fall of 2016.
The announcement came in an email sent to members of the university community. “You will notice some increased activity in Parking Lots H and J on the west side of the Main Campus,” said Mike Dizon, Chief Communications Officer of NEIU. “Crews will inspect the area and perform preliminary tests on the site, which will be the location of Northeastern’s first residence hall.”
The residence halls were part of what NEIU administration was calling “The Decade of Dreams,” a plan to erect a series of new buildings over the course of 10 years. In that plan, on-campus student housing was planned to be “phase 2” of the initiative and also to be on the athletic fields on the south end of campus.
“As dreams turn into reality, we have to then face that reality,” said Dizon when talking to Independent. According to Dizon, building on what are now the academic fields would require “Heavy duty upgrades to make sure that utilities reach that end of campus.”
Originally, the university officials weren’t sure whether they would first build on campus grounds or on the 3401 block of W Bryn Mawr Avenue. Currently, the university is pursuing to obtain six parcels of land through eminent domain, which gives governments the right to take private property for public use after just compensation to the property owner. Legal proceedings are still underway for the acquisition of land in on Bryn Mawr Avenue.