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On-campus housing to expand in August

In an effort to expand its student housing grounds and ultimately attract more students to USF, a new residence hall is under construction while an older dorm is getting a face-lift.

The corner of Holly and Maple is the location for the newest student dormitory, Cypress Hall. Beta Hall, after a year of being closed for renovation, will re-open its doors in August.

With the growing population of freshmen at USF, the Department of Residence Services has focused its efforts on constructing the Cypress Residence Halls.

According to Tom Kane, director of Residence Services, the new residence hall is mainly intended for freshmen. The hall features two different building styles: Cypress Suites and Cypress Apartments, both with unique floor plans designed for student comfort.

“Cypress Suites will be double-loaded quarters with four students to a suite,” Kane said. Each suite is comprised of two bedrooms with two beds in each room, which will serve to house four students. The shower room and lavatory are both outside of the bedrooms, accessible by a small lobby.

Cypress Apartments are modeled similar to Magnolia Apartments, Kane said. The entrance is through the kitchen, which leads to a living area. On either side of the living area are two bedrooms and their corresponding restrooms. Once reopened, Beta Hall will provide about 300 beds, and will accommodate both men and women. According to Kane, two communal bathrooms will be available on each wing of the co-ed building.

Between the renovation of Beta and the opening of Cypress Hall, USF will offer 900 new beds this August.

Sophomore Erica Fagg said she would be interested in living in either of the two buildings.

“The Cypress Hall appeals to me. I live in Castor Hall, and four girls to a bathroom seems a lot better than 46 girls to a bathroom. It beats the communal bathroom of Castor,” Fagg said.

Likewise, Freshman Kareem Smith said she believes students should get value for their money when living on campus.

“I would live in a co-ed dorm like (Beta) if it were renovated. Students want to get their money’s worth if they are living on campus,” Smith said.

The new residence hall at USF will also be completed in August, just in time for the fall semester.

“Everything (in the construction process) is on schedule and on budget,” Kane said. “Students like new (facilities), and (Residence Services) predicts that Cypress will be a popular residence hall.”

Beta, for now, will keep its name after the renovation, unlike Alpha, which changed its name after reconstruction to Kosove.