UC San Diego announced Thursday it would again offer guaranteed housing to all incoming undergraduate students after suspending the promise during the heart of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The university reduced the amount of guaranteed housing in order to reduce housing density in an effort to limit the spread of the virus. Eight years ago, UCSD created plans intended to expand on-campus housing to increase access to a UC education by offering student housing at below-market rates.
With the opening of the Theatre District Living and Learning Neighborhood in fall 2023, the university will again offer a two-year undergraduate on-campus housing guarantee for incoming students. The undergraduate class entering fall 2022 also will qualify for this two-year housing guarantee.
“We are aware that finding housing at affordable prices is becoming increasingly difficult throughout California,” said UCSD Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla. “In response, we have enhanced our strategies to address the housing shortage and return to guarantees suspended during the pandemic.”
According to the university, with 18,022 total beds on campus, UCSD ranks third in the nation for student housing inventory and currently outperforms national trends by housing 39% of undergraduate students and 49% of graduate students.
Starting in 2023, three new on-campus housing neighborhoods will open in successive years, adding 5,300 new undergraduate beds on campus by 2025. The Theatre District Living and Learning Neighborhood will provide housing to 2,000 undergraduate students when it scheduled to open in fall 2023, while the Pepper Canyon West Living and Learning Neighborhood will provide 1,300 single- occupancy rooms to transfer and upper-division undergraduate students in fall 2024.
Additionally, the proposed Ridge Walk North Living and Learning Neighborhood is anticipated to open in the fall of 2025 to provide housing to an additional 2,000 undergraduate students.
Khosla worked with the UC Regents and state legislators to develop the $2 billion Higher Education Student Housing Grant Program that is helping to build new student housing across California. UC San Diego recently received a $100 million grant from the program to lower rates up to 55% below market for 1,100 low-income California resident students.
“Our goal is to house 50 percent of all students by 2025 and to continue making progress toward a four-year housing guarantee at below market rates,” he said.
–City News Service