City Vista apartments reopen for the 2022-2023 school year

Rising seniors express frustrations over housing options

Since the spring of 2021, City Vista apartments have been closed, undergoing repairs and renovations from damages sustained during that year’s winter storm. After rooms had already been assigned, City Vista was denied as an option to students for the 2021-2022 school year because of the necessary repairs. For the 2022-2023 school year, students are being allowed to move back into the apartments.

According to an email sent on March 21 by Rachel Boaz-Toppel, assistant director for Residential Education, students will be able to move in beginning August 19 at noon.

“In anticipation of City Vista coming back online, we have conducted assessments to determine which populations and locations students are interested in exploring and how to build a selection process that works for everyone,” wrote Boaz-Toppel in her email.

Stephanie Gonzalez, assistant director of Housing Operations, was unable to clarify the process for decision-making around City Vista but said more information will be provided over the summer to students living in these rooms.

As a housing option for upperclassmen, these apartments being closed caused much frustration in choosing housing, especially after the reinstatement of the three-year residency requirement. After originally choosing City Vista as her housing option for the 2021-2022 school year, junior English major Juliana Martinez was notified by Residential Life that she and her suite would not be able to live there.

“It was a very stressful couple of weeks, where it was like, ‘am I going to live at home? If I do live at home what does that mean for my roommate? Because like, you know, she lives in Rhode Island and she’s not here and that’s not a feasible thing […] We did finally get the notification that they were putting us in Murchison, and I was like, ‘okay, that worked out,’ but it was stressful,” Martinez said.

Many of the students that were moved into Murchison had to deal with other facilities issues within that building. Residents were given a free parking pass for their troubles.

This semester, rising juniors were given priority registration for housing because they still have to fulfill the three-year residency requirement. Because of the extenuating circumstances of the past few years, some seniors are frustrated with the ways housing has been handled, especially for upperclassmen who want to live on campus.

“The class right below us was very well-accommodated during the fall of 2020. They were incoming freshmen who were allowed to live on campus, while we, as incoming sophomores, were not allowed unless under extenuating circumstances. In short, they already had their period of priority and accommodations while a significant portion of the 2023 class has been consistently left to find housing without aid from the University,” said Miranda Mittleman, rising senior engineering science major. “Again, I do recognize the intent, but it feels like a serious oversight.”

Because City Vista has been closed for so long, rising juniors and seniors alike are worried that it won’t be open in the fall 2022 semester and that they’ll be moved out again.

“If they were somehow completely unaware that the building needing such extensive repairs was even a possibility, then that’s a serious misstep on the part of the Residential Life staff. Either way, there was a big group of students that were completely screwed over by this entire ordeal, and it’s definitely been a frustrating and stressful experience,” Mittleman said.

Though this was a tricky situation for everyone involved, students found that the closure of City Vista harmed current juniors the most.

“I appreciate them telling us as soon as they found out, instead of waiting for long or anything and trying to give us as much time as they could, but a part of me wonders: could that housing inspection really not have been completed before housing selections were made? And even if it couldn’t have, I really think the big one is just, with the reapplication thing and the fact that it would have been nice to [give] those of us that should have been living in City Vista the consideration,” said Martinez.