SCSU Coborn Apartments See Jump in Residents
ST. CLOUD - After struggling to attract students over the last few years, there's been a bump in occupancy numbers in the St. Cloud State Coborn Plaza Apartments.
The apartments now have an 87 percent occupancy rate. It's exceeding recent expectations. In the spring, the University said they were hoping for a 75 percent occupancy rate this fall. SCSU was expecting more students to move into the apartments when they kick started a marketing and social media campaign for the units earlier this year.
"We had more students who were living on campus who moved out to Coborn Apartments and that was our goal all along. We were pleased that we were able to retain those students," Wanda Overland, the vice president of the SCSU student life division says.
The numbers are still off the early business model projections from 2010, which assumed a 95 percent occupancy rate in the apartments.
Overland says part of the increase is a bump in student groups living in the complex. A recovery living community is housed in the apartments and the program more than doubled recently. A veteran’s community was added to Coborn Plaza this year and there are also dozens of international students who moved in this fall.
The $30 million Coborn Plaza opened on fifth avenue in 2010. The apartments have over 450 student units.
Overland says the University is having ongoing conversations with the Wedum Foundation about their lease of the property, which expires in 2020. She did confirm that SCSU extended its lease with the nearby Welcome Center last spring.
In April, SCSU administration said they expected their losses to be "minimized" from the apartments as enrollment numbers rebounded. Then President Earl Potter said getting occupancy up to at least 75 percent would result in $300,000 more in revenue for the University.