Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania

Bloomsburg,

Student Housing Feasibility Study And Market Study Update

In the fall of 2009, Bloomsburg’s entering freshman class was unexpectedly high, while more upper-level students than usual requested assignments in traditional halls, leading to 111% occupancy. In order to minimize such overflow in the future, the university asked B&D to prepare a study that would determine the appropriate path to solving this challenge. Our approach included a value analysis to confirm the university’s mission was in line with the project, interviews/focus groups with students and administration, a peer review of existing housing, and a financial model to estimate the rates needed to balance the investment in different scenarios. In partnership with Education Realty Trust, we were retained again in 2011 to update our market study. Through focus groups, off-campus research, the implementation and analysis of a student survey, and the application of its proprietary Demand-Based Programming analysis, we determined that the university’s primary drivers for student housing demand, the number of beds the university should develop/maintain at the Lower Campus, and the projected occupancy rates for developing suite- and apartment-style units at the Upper Campus. We issued recommendations with respect to new housing construction, rental rates, and other factors critical to ensuring a successful housing project.