An Illinois legislative hearing on college affordability Wednesday shows the cost of updating university housing has students paying more.
Richard Wheeler, from the University of Illinois, says since 2000, the school's three campuses have undertaken 11 housing projects. The latest is finishing a new dorm on the Urbana-Champaign campus at the end of this year. Eighty-million dollars in bonds were needed to complete the project. “On each campus, student population has grown, student expectations have changed, and existing residential buildings have aged. As new buildings are constructed and old ones restored, we must design them to meet current building codes and to meet current student expectations.” Northern Illinois University has also borrowed to complete housing projects. A top university official says NIU saved money by removing unused telephone lines in its dorms. The cash was reinvested to improve Internet access.