University of Central Missouri

Warrensburg,

Student Housing Master Plan, Market Analysis Update, And Master Plan Update

B&D was hired in 2007 to help with the student housing portion of the University of Central Missouri’s campus master plan. We were tasked with evaluating current inventory, and identifying improvements and developments to reinforce the university’s mission of supporting its students. The university wanted to encourage on-campus living, knowing how that impacts retention and graduation rates. We completed the master plan in the following steps: a visioning exercise to define the goals for the master plan; student focus groups to gain qualitative information on preferences; a competitive context analysis; an off-campus market analysis; an Internet-based survey to quantify housing demand; and a financial model and 20-year pro forma. Our studies revealed that UCM’s housing stock did not match market demand and that many of the existing facilities needed renovation to meet student expectations. The master plan included a series of renovations to existing halls and the construction of new suite-style and Greek housing. In order to make the development of additional beds meet the student demand, we worked with the university to establish a number of policy, pricing, and budget management strategies. We were retained again in 2012 to update the market analysis. This effort focused heavily on research connected to a proposed 320-bed apartment complex, and included focus group interviews, and off-campus market analysis, survey implementation, and programming. Our findings included an assessment of overall housing demand to verify that occupancy levels would not decrease when the new apartments opened. We were selected again in 2013 to analyze the impact of a two-year live-on campus housing requirement and its potential effect on students’ experience, academic success, and existing campus housing. We confirmed demand for new beds and outlined a method of reconfiguring existing housing to accommodate the need. We also presented a number of living-learning concepts, staffing additions, and support programs to enhance the new program’s success. As a result, the university moved forward with construction of The Crossing — South at Holden, a 325-bed, $42 million student housing facility that opened in 2015.