University officials, students, and executives from The Michaels Organization gathered with community and business leaders at Rowan University October 14 to celebrate Holly Pointe Commons, a $145 million student housing complex now under construction on the Glassboro campus. The Mayor of Glassboro, Leo McCabe, was also in attendance.
“We’re honored to be partnering with Rowan University to assist the institution in fulfilling their vision for student living,” said Joseph Coyle, president of University Student Living, the comprehensive student housing company of The Michaels Organization.
“Rowan is our neighbor. It is a school we love and know well,” said Coyle. “As the University’s demand for housing grows and evolve, we have the ability to respond quickly and the resources to fulfill their needs within a very short period of time.”
Students and faculty gathered at the University today were treated to a preview of the 303,000-square -foot-complex that is being constructed on 8 acres at Main and Carpenter streets in Glassboro. The design of the complex includes both a four-story and a seven-story building, connected by a three-level bridge. The serpentine-shaped footprint of the complex incorporates a new campus commons area that will be both green space and a gathering place.
This is the University’s first-ever public-private partnership to develop on-campus housing with a private developer. Rowan entered into an agreement with University Student Living and the non-profit group Provident-Group-Rowan Properties LLC to construct the complex, which will be managed by University Student Living.
“Rowan is on a steep trajectory of growth. Clearly, we’re a University in demand,” says Rowan President Ali A. Houshmand, noting that freshman applications for 2015 increased by 20 percent. “This public-private partnership is exciting news as we move vigorously in our plan to expand academic programming and increase our enrollment and it is exciting news for the economic development of the Borough of Glassboro,” says Houshmand.
Construction began in the spring and is expected to be completed by the fall of 2016, offering 5,332 new beds for residential students.
Designed by Erdy McHenry Architecture of Philadelphia, the complex will offer perimeter bedrooms grouped around central facilities and gathering spaces designed to bring students together. It will also feature a two-story, 550-seat, 20,000 square foot dining hall that will be managed by Gourmet Dining, the University’s food service vendor.
The building’s facade will be constructed of metal facing with large windows throughout. It includes floor to ceiling glass at community lounge areas. Designed with sustainability incorporated into every detail, Holly Pointe Commons is minimally targeting LEED Silver certification. Torcon, Inc., a family owned company headquartered in Philadelphia and one of the most active firms in the Mid-Atlantic region, is the construction management firm for the project.
Today’s celebration at the site included the filling of a time capsule by University officials and students, who wrote 100 letters of hope for the future and who have collected items — a Rowan yearbook, a selfie stick, and assorted University memorabilia—to fill the time capsule that will be placed in a prominent location at Holly Pointe Commons.
Rowan Vice President for Student Life/Dean of Students Richard Jones told the assembled crowd that the unique design of Holly Pointe Commons will help students develop a strong living and learning community near Rowan Boulevard, a main thoroughfare lined with residential and commercial space.
“We need to provide our students with a true home away from home,” said Jones, noting that residential facilities have an impact on academic success and retention. “The design of the complex is dynamic, it’s thoughtful, it’s creative, and it represents the future of Rowan University.”
Financing for the Holly Pointe Commons complex includes $145 million in bonds approved by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority.