SAN FRANCISCO – To help provide more affordable housing on campus, a San Francisco university is in development of a new housing project.

University of California Hastings College of Law will build new affordable housing for students on campus in cooperation with the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). The shared housing will be home to 1,250 students. UC Hastings plans to replace its Snodgrass Hall with a new academic building. When this is completed, it plans to tear down Snodgrass and build new housing for students.

The shared housing will provide shared access to the facilities of UC Hastings and UCSF, in addition to some crossover of their academic programs. The two schools collaborated with the creation of UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science and Health Policy, founded by UC Hastings Chancellor and Dean David Faigman in 2008.

The joint housing will help with the housing shortage that both universities face for students. According to UC Hastings, the project is under review by both universities. The new academic building is expected to promote more cohesion on campus with modern classrooms. The new student housing will feature 770 units with construction expected to begin upon the completion of the academic building in 2020.

“The high cost of housing has become a barrier to enrollment and the production of affordable student housing in San Francisco will benefit both institutions," UC Hastings CFO David Seward told the Northern California Record. “The intention is to create in partnership with UCSF a sustainable, resilient campus footprint that will cohesively support a graduate student village culture. The blending of the two student bodies – law students and health services students and trainees – will be facilitated by shared, common access to the UC Hastings existing campus. UCSF students and trainees will be given full use of the law school’s food service operations, libraries and study areas, and fitness/athletics and social space amenities.”

The cost of living is significant in San Francisco, often making it difficult for students to find affordable housing in the area. Declining enrollment for universities in San Francisco can be attributed to students’ inability to find housing that they can afford. Building the new affordable housing on campus will make it significant easier for students to afford living in the city and possibly help with enrollment at the schools.

The average rent in San Francisco for a one-bedroom apartment is $3,000 per month, according to research done by San Francisco State University. Campus hosing can cost $833 to $1,233 per bed per month at SFUC for the 10 months out of the year students are in class.

With the cost of housing in San Francisco on the rise, Seward said: “The high cost of living in San Francisco is a significant barrier to entry for students of both UCSF and UC Hastings. The provision of student housing within the financial means of professional school students will allow for the students to minimize their debt upon graduation and mitigate cost.”

UC Hastings said is also exploring other possible areas where it can collaborate with UCSF to decrease the cost of attendance and improve service levels.

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