Cheap dorms demolished

After being a home away from home to many students, Cougar Place, a residential dorm facility, will be demolished this summer, leaving students to have to find new living accommodations at an increased price.

“The facility has far outlived its expected life span, and officials have decided to deconstruct Cougar Place in order to make room for future housing,” a press release by Lindsay Marshall, University Services Communications Coordinator said.

Displaced students will have to find new places to live and will have to pay more money if they choose to stay on campus.

Students living in Cougar Place paid the least amount for any campus housing, at about $471 per month for a single.

Students in Moody Towers paid about $579 per month for a single and Cougar Village singles paid about $663 per month. Apartment housing on campus starts at $600 per month.

“The deconstruction of Cougar Place this fall will not result in the displacement of any students. The housing agreements are for an academic year or for a summer semester, so they will have expired prior to the beginning of the project,” said Emily Messa, assistant vice president of University Services.

Anthony Agi, a post-baccalaureate student studying hotel and restaurant management, has lived at Cougar Place since August. He plans on moving to Cullen Oaks during the summer due to the demolition.

“I would have loved to stay here, but it’s old,” Agi said. “We are benefitting from cheap rates, but a lot of people complain that it is old, the air conditioning is too loud and there are roaches running around.”

Agi didn’t mind the difficulties because of the reduced rates, but he is also excited to be moving to a location.

“I have mixed feelings, other places are better, but this is cheaper,” Agi said.

Agi said he would pay about $80 more per month at Cullen Oaks.

Cougar Place demolition is planned to take place towards the end of summer 2011. Students living at Cougar Place will not be evicted due to the demolition.

“No student will be evicted. How much students will have to pay now will depend on where they relocate,” said Richard Bonnin, executive director of media relations. “A new Campus Housing Booklet has been completed and is available online. University Services is being proactive in sharing information about housing options and is reaching out across campus to answer questions.”

All Cougar Place material, fixtures, and furniture that are in good enough condition will be either reused around campus or recycled. The mural, done by artist Malou Flato, will be taken down, but will be restored and installed in another campus location.

“The Cougar Place building is being deconstructed,” said Bonnin. “The university will re-use as much of the material as possible in keeping with its commitment to sustainability initiatives.”

A new housing complex will take the place of Cougar Place.

“The University is in the programming stages for sophomore-style housing, which will be located on the former Cougar Place site,” Bonnin said. “We anticipate 800-1,000 beds being available at this site, but that’s a preliminary estimate. The number could easily change as plans develop.”

Proposals have been made to increase the total number of available beds on campus.

“The administration is currently having a wide-ranging discussion of all of the issues relating to student success and residential life as we prepare to have 8,000 residents living on campus by 2013,” he said.

There are 4,031 available beds on campus. 2,225 of them are filled, which leaves about 57 percent vacant.

To increase the number of students living on campus, proposals have been discussed, but none have been submitted to the Board of Regents for approval.

One such idea included “looking toward the requirement of Freshman living on campus in Fall, 2013,” according to the Office of Vice President for Student Affairs March 23 Staff Meeting minutes.

Additional reporting was conducted by Darlene Campos.


  • I want to hear all these proposals. First, you can't make all freshman stay on campus since the housing isn't affordable for all. Why stay on campus when you can save money staying home?
    Cleary UH doesn't get too many people from out of state which is sad. Proves UH is no where close to being teir one.
    I have a proposals for them: LOWER HOUSING COSTS. If staying with a random person was cheaper than staying off campus One bedroom apartment then more people would most likely stay on campus. Thats the administrations fault for building housing that people cannot afford. Should have thought about what people could pay for before building it. Clearly thier heads were stuck in one direction and not looking into all the possibilities of cost affects the amount of people that want to stay on campus.

    I hear the lofts did not have too many residents living there. So I hope they aren't making these dorms just for sophmores. UH administrators have never heard of tradition. Let all those underclassman stay in the newly renovated quads and the towers build something for the upperclassmen that is cheaper than the lofts. OR LOWER THE COSTS.

  • Lowerprices, you are a very uninformed person. We have plenty of out-of-state students and plenty of out-of-the-country students as well.

    You're welcome to leave our University to attend another. In fact, I'd rather you leave and take you negativity with you.

  • Vacancy rates might even upd higher if/when Houston builds the LRT.

    At some point housing costs should come down on campus…

  • It always astounds me to see people actually have negative feelings towards doing things that make the campus a better place to be. CougarPlace is old and probably needs to go. Renovation costs would probably not be worth it and construction of new facilities contribute to a better experience on campus.

    Class of '10

  • Cougar Place needs to go, but why build new facilities when we could find better things to do with the money?
    And what is "sophomore style housing"? Towers, Cougar Village, Quads, Cambridge Oaks, Cullen Oaks, and Lofts… we already have every style, what else is there

    I have a friend who lives in a safe neighborhood, 15 minutes from campus, in a one-bedroom apartment ALL to herself (yeah, her own kitchen, bathroom, living room, dining area, bedroom, and parking spot 8 feet from her doorstep). She usually pays $560 per month.

    Also, requiring freshman to live on campus discriminates against low-income matriculating students who are already losing grant and loan prospects because of legislatures. Not going to happen..

    They should really look into making meal plans optional for everyone, staffing more competent housing workers and safety personnel, and cleaning up facilities in the towers and quads. Instead of providing more unused beds, make the empty ones we already have more attractive.

    • Requiring freshmen to live on campus is a bad idea because of the discrepancies in quality between the two dorms. Forcing kids to live in Cougar village is alright, but forcing people to stay in Moody Towers for a year most definitely is not for everybody.

      As for Cougar Place, I think whatever they replace it with needs to cost approximately the same or cheaper.

Leave a Comment