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Carey Hall remodeling approved by Board of Trustees


A sign advertising a remodeling of Carey Hall stands just outside the entrance to the hall in the Towers complex, Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020.

A $4.8 million renovation of Carey Hall was approved by the Board of Trustees at their Thursday, February 13 meeting. 

The remodeled rooms will convert the four-person suites with two bunk beds into two-person suites with two full-sized beds, new closets, wood-like flooring and new furniture, according to Director of Residence Life Kathleen Gardner. Central Michigan University would be among the only public universities in Michigan to offer full-sized beds on campus. 

“Rooms designed to accommodate two students per bedroom are common for university housing facilities, and a handful of universities are beginning to use full-size beds in their new or remodeled facilities,” Gardner said. 

For the 2019 fall semester, Carey Hall was taken offline due to a low occupancy. During this time, the idea of a two-person living space was discussed “in light of enrollment and budget,” and plans for renovations began, said associate vice president of Facilities Management Jonathan Webb.

An advertisement of the remodeling was placed in front of Carey Hall several months ago, which noted the project was pending board approval. All rooms offered in Carey Hall were filled Wednesday, Feb. 12, Gardner said -- the same day registration went online and before the remodeling had been approved. President Bob Davies said that is not uncommon.

“We had a discussion with the board throughout the process," Davies said. "We had to begin marketing it because of the deadlines for housing ... The other option was not to do it. Delay registration, or delay (the project) another year.”

The choice for the renovations was a way to provide more options, but also to help some students find a more familiar living arrangement at CMU. 

“Most of our college students did not share a room growing up," Gardner said. "Many of them did not share a bathroom growing up. Many of them come to college having already had a full-sized bed.”

Residence Life anticipates renovations for Carey Hall to be completed in August 2020.