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Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Opinion

Moody Towers should not be torn down now if it’s going to cost more later


UH should not tear down Moody Towers for a new, expensive building but instead make housing cheaper. | File Photo

The new Quadrangle is scheduled to open next fall, and according to Executive Director of Student Housing and Residential Life Don Yackley, the renovation of Moody Towers is next.

While Yackley said UH Housing will keep affordability in mind, Moody is already the most affordable option to students who live on campus. 

Moody is the cheapest dorm by around $1,000. According to the Housing Rate Sheet, a double room at Moody will cost around $2,771 in the 2020-21 school year, while a single will cost over $1,000 more. This year, the rates for a double and single room were $2,690 and $3,678, respectively.

A spot at Cougar Place now costs around $4,000, while the Lofts can go over $6,000. It’s clear that housing on campus is very expensive.

Getting a new fancy facility like the updated Quadrangle is great, but UH should think about providing more affordable housing rather than just fancy housing. 

Moody Towers is the only option right now under $3,000, and it shouldn’t be. Living in Moody at the lowest price also means sharing a room, and lower income students should be able to have their own privacy for a low cost.

Moody is not the most accessible dorm, as its laundry room on the top floor can only be accessed by stairs. The shower stalls in the communal bathrooms are not set up for accessibility either. 

Hopefully these issues will be addressed in the remodel of Moody, but since the number of accessible dorms are limited in general, we can’t expect every disabled student living on campus to be able to pay the big bucks for Cougar Place during the renovation or just suffer if they’re not able to get a spot there.

Having multiple affordable and accessible dorms would be beneficial to UH in other ways. If more people could afford to live on campus, it would decrease the amount of cars on campus, which the University is always encouraging, and hopefully help the parking situation.

Ways that UH could provide lower-cost housing vary. When they decide to rebuild an old or build a new dorm, they can make more of a communal bathroom style like in Moody Towers rather than having a bathroom for every room or suite. 

UH could also take the initiative to apply for grants so it can make its housing cheaper, no matter what dorm you live in.

Recently, the University announced we would have food delivery robots on campus. These no doubt cost a lot of money, and that money could have been spent on housing instead of on something most students use DoorDash or Uber Eats for anyway.

It’s understandable the University wants to have a cool technological achievement like a robot, but it should think of its students first. 

No matter what, there will always be students who want to live on campus. Not having a commute but having independence and community is very desirable.

In fact, students who live on campus have a higher chance of doing better academically than those who don’t.

These opportunities should extend to every student, no matter what their income is, so UH needs more affordable housing, not new and more expensive housing.

Opinion writer Anna Baker is an English sophomore and can be reached at [email protected]

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