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UC Berkeley's First On-Campus Dorm In Over 5 Years Nears Completion

Rendering of UC Berkeley's newest on-campus dorm, David Blackwell Hall

UC Berkeley is on track to open its first on-campus dorm since 2012. The eight-story, 752-bed dorm, David Blackwell Hall, is scheduled to open in August, the East Bay Times reports. The residence hall was built through a partnership with American Campus Communities. Priority will be given to newly admitted freshmen.

The entire University of California system has been building more on-campus dorms due to growing student enrollment and high demand. A Student Housing Initiative projects the system will add 14,000 affordable student housing beds by 2020. As of July, the university system had built 3,600 beds across its nine universities.

UC Berkeley is among the campuses with the greatest need for beds. It has the lowest percentage of on-campus beds for students, serving about 22% of undergraduates and 9% of graduates, according to the Housing Master Plan Task Force draft report. To house half of the undergraduate students and a quarter of the graduate students, an additional 15,600 beds were needed as of 2016. The school’s current stock is 8,700 beds.  

The school signed master leases for 665 off-campus beds to accommodate undergraduate and graduate students by 2023. Over 200 beds will come online for the 2018-19 school year at two new buildings.

The lease agreements were signed with ACC for 100 beds at New Sequoia apartments at Telegraph Avenue and Haste Street and 200 beds at Garden Village at Fulton Street and Dwight Way.

The university previously leased room for 57 students at a 12-story high-rise built by Panoramic Interests at 1321 Mission St. in San Francisco. 

UC Berkeley Chief Financial Officer Rosemarie Rae said during a Bisnow event the school plans to build 8,000 to 9,000 beds in the next decade. She said the biggest challenge to building housing is that the university is land-constrained and there are not many options for housing on campus without having to relocate structures.