Internet, Location Key For Student Housing
For a student housing project, you better have great internet or you better fold your tent, we learned just days before our University Development and Student Housing event in Atlanta.
Haven Campus Communities president Jay Williams says having reliable high-speed internet at a student housing project is a must in today's world.
“It doesn't matter what your pool looks like,” he says."If you don't have the internet capacity to keep up with their demand, they're going to leave."
EdR's Rodney King (on left with EdR's Jeffrey Resetco and Tom Trubiana) concurs.
“They're never disconnected from the internet,” Rodney says. “Now, most of our residents have two or three or four devices connected with them, so it's extremely important.”
Jay says to get a competitive edge, Haven owns the wiring and network at its properties, such as Stadium Village near Kennesaw State University (above) and Haven West near the University of West Georgia.
Doing so, Jay says, allows Haven to have “bandwidth elasticity” to keep up with shifting demand. If, for some reason, there's a spurt of data at one part of the property—say students are downloading videos while at the pool—its network can accommodate that demand by shifting the bandwidth allocation.
Rodney says another big factor for success in today's student housing world is location, such as Georgia Heights in Athens (here), in the heart of Downtown Athens and an across-the-street stroll to the University of Georgia's campus.
“Location is key now,” he says. “If you have the best location in a market, you should be able to survive the ups and downs.”
And that location is as close to the main campus as possible—and on it, if you're developing a public/private project for a university system. That's because walkability is a big factor.
“Most of the students want to be able to have a walkable community, to have an urban feel,” Rodney says. “Even in some of these smaller markets, not major urban areas, you're seeing some of these urban-like projects.”
Jay and Rodney are part of an all-star lineup of student housing developers and operators, including Peak Campus president Jeff Githens (above), Kennesaw State University's J. Mark Lawson, Carter SVP David Nelson and Landmark Properties CEO Wesley Rogers at our University Development and Student Housing event 7:30am, Thursday, Sept. 22 at the InterContinental Hotel in Buckhead. Sign up here.