Residents Respond to Townhouse Updates

Parker Abate, Reporter

Students are enjoying newly renovated townhouses located at the bottom of campus. Crews updated the interiors this year after completing exterior renovations in 2015.

Dominick de Matteo, Area Coordinator for Residence Life, said changes are extensive.

“The living room used to be at the front of the house and the double bedroom, on the first floor, used to be in the back of the house. We made the decision to change the floor plan to create a larger bedroom in the front of the house and an open concept living room/kitchen area in the back of the house,” said de Matteo.

There are new counters in the living room and kitchen areas with brand new bar stools that enable them to look into the living room while they eat or do homework.

The living room has  new couch units, which can be set up as single chairs or pushed together to make a large couch. There are also new side tables,  coffee tables, and  media units so students can store their gaming systems, TV, and their DVD collections for the best entertainment experience.

De Matteo boasted about the new vinyl flooring, bathrooms, furniture and lighting.

Junior communications major, Mike Gombita, a tenant in the townhouses, is thrilled with the new digs.

“My favorite part about the townhouses is the modernized look. It feels more open, and you’re able to enjoy more of a social gathering both in the kitchen and the living room. I also like the bar set up that divides the living area and kitchen,” Gombita said.

Sophomore physical therapy major Zach Mason said the downstairs layout is his favorite part of the newly renovated townhouses.

“By connecting the living room and kitchen, it creates a much more open space, which allows for more space for people to sit and hang out,” said Mason.

De Matteo had difficulty pinpointing his favorite part of the revamped homes.

“My favorite part would have to be the updated kitchen, the flooring throughout the house and the new lighting. There are simple things that can be updated and it makes a huge difference,” said De Matteo.

Mason compared the the design to that of well-designed old homes.

“I entered the townhouses at multiple times last year and always thought they were a great place to live, but with the upgrades I can’t think of anything that hasn’t been improved. I am a big fan of all the renovations,” said Mason.

De Matteo and Mason described the townhouses as an environment where students can grow personally.

“Students are that much closer to realizing what it will be like to live in their own apartment where they have to take care of things on their own. I know that the townhouses are also popular because of its location, being still on the upper part of campus but kind of nestled away in its own area,” de Matteo explained.

“The townhouses are a great place to live because you have to opportunity to have an off campus feel and live with 5 of your friends but still have the luxuries of living on campus,” said Mason.

While de Matteo said he would not change a thing about the new homes, Mason has one suggestion for improvement.

“I would change the furniture supplied. Instead of three or four chairs, it would be more beneficial to have a couch supplied. My roommates and I went out on the first day we were here and spent money on a futon to add more seating in the living room,” Mason said.

De Matteo, Gombita, and Mason agreed that that wear and tear made the renovations necessary.

“It was time to renovate the townhouses. We wanted to address some of the concerns that students had brought to us over the years, the smaller downstairs bedroom, no lighting in certain areas of the houses, the outdated kitchen and bathrooms,” said de Matteo.

Gombita said the new look may also impress prospective students. “I think they deserved a renovation. It’s been over 10 years since a renovation has been done to the townhouses. It makes it more appealing to students interested in townhouses,” he said.

When asked to play the role of a realtor attempting to sell the townhouses, Gombita highlighted the “new” aspect.

“The main idea would be “brand new,” and these houses are nothing but the best if you want an off-campus feel, but still be on campus. It definitely takes away the idea of a residence hall and you’re able to have the same benefits of having a meal plan and being able to experience campus,” said Gombita.

He said it’s a luxury to live in an isolated area.

“When you want to get away, you can get away by living on Townhouse Road,” Gombita said.