The vast majority of Georgetown students are studying remotely this semester, with only approximately 500 students living on campus. As students begin to return to campus, many will find residential buildings looking a little different than they left them in the spring.
Over the summer, the university renovated student residences as part of a plan approved by the university’s board of directors back in 2019. This plan spans for five years and will cost $75 million in total. According to Director of Residential Services Bill Huff, the construction took place in student kitchens in Village A and Village C East, where renovations are still in progress. Apartments in Henle also received new furniture.
In an email to the Voice, Huff wrote that the heating, ventilation, air, and cooling systems (HVAC) in some residences were upgraded to “keep the university community safe from mold and other allergens.” In the past, Georgetown has received complaints of black mold in residences. An article published by the university also said that the HVAC systems were updated in part to reduce the transmission of the COVID-19 virus among students.
According to Huff, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the resulting lack of students on campus, allowed the university to push the renovations through faster than anticipated.
“With the reduced occupancy this spring and with no conferences this summer,” Huff wrote, “the university was able to accelerate planned upgrades for safety and general maintenance to residence halls and common spaces across campus in an effort to improve the residential experience.”
The renovations also included the purchase of nearly 4,000 mattresses, new carpet-free flooring in rooms and common areas, and upgrades to the kitchens and furniture in common areas. As the renovation plan has over three years left, Huff wrote that the university will continue updating other areas on campus into the semester.
“The plan was designed to improve the conditions of Georgetown’s existing infrastructure with a focus on student residences,” Huff wrote. “This fall, we continue to evaluate potential projects and look forward to our Hoyas being able to enjoy these renovated spaces.”