UM planning $190 million dormitory project on North Campus

Kim Kozlowski
The Detroit News

For the first time in years, the University of Michigan will build new dormitories.

Three residence halls for undergraduates are part of a proposed $190 million plan on UM's North Campus to be open by fall semester 2024.

Area to be included in the University of Michigan student housing project on North Campus.

On Thursday, the board of regents approved the project, which will include demolition of the apartment buildings in Northwood III, eight buildings that now are only used for COVID-19 quarantine and isolation housing.   

The new residence halls, to be approved at a later date, will total 380,000 square feet and will include 1,200 beds. Future plans may include dining, student wellness spaces and a geothermal unit to heat and cool the spaces. 

The regents authorized issuing bids and awarding contracts for demolition and site preparation at a cost not to exceed $5 million. They also approved Chicago-based architect Solomon Gordwell Buenz to design the project.

Funding for the project will come from Student Life Resources, university officials said in a request outlining the project.

UM Vice President for Student Life Martino Harmon said the first phase of the North Campus housing project will help address  the university's housing shortage.

"Currently the demand for University of Michigan housing exceeds the supply," said Harmon. "Although we are able to house all first-year, incoming students who need housing, second-, third-, fourth-year students and transfer students are not always able to obtain housing at the university. It is our position that we want all students who need and want housing to have a bed."

The project will have a short-term impact on displacement of students, Harmon added.

"Yet it will make a long-term impact on student well-being," Harmon said.