University of the Arts

Philadelphia,

Student Housing Demand Study

In 2008 the University of the Arts selected B&D to conduct a student housing demand study. With a 656-bed student housing inventory, the university was unable to house all incoming first-year students. Its housing system was comprised of former apartment buildings that had been repurposed as student housing. Several lounges and common areas had been converted to residential units, increasing the bed inventory to 675, still short of campus needs. Our approach included analyzing the off-campus housing market, developing and administering an electronic student survey, analyzing the survey results, and developing a program using our proprietary demand-based programming model. Upon completion of our research and analysis, we determined that the university could absorb 253 net new beds. While there was demand for a variety of unit types, the scale of construction and associated efficiencies dictated the development of traditional or suite-style beds. Considering students’ greater focus on independence and privacy, it was recommended that the development of new housing be satisfied with suite-style units. In addition, although the existing inventory of apartments effectively addressed the demand for apartment-style housing, we proposed that renovations might be considered to improve the housing inventory and better meet students’ expectations for apartment living.