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Transition Underway For 2000 Comm. Ave, Set To Open As BC Dorm

2000 Commonwealth Ave., an upscale apartment building acquired by the University in 2008, will be renovated into a dormitory for students as part of Boston College’s plans to expand student housing. The building, projected to reopen in the summer of 2016, was purchased from Archstone Properties to be used as undergraduate housing.

Administrators finalized plans to remodel the building in June and began construction on Sept. 1. The addition, part of the University’s Institutional Master Plan, will contribute to BC’s goal of meeting 100 percent of the demand for undergraduate housing, according to University Spokesperson Jack Dunn.

Previously, a management company had run the building and the apartments were available to students for rent. With the new construction, 2000 Commonwealth Ave. will become become a new, apartment-style dormitory staffed by BC residential life.

The building is scheduled to open in time for the fall semester at the conclusion of a year-long renovation effort. In order to get it up to BC dormitory standards, the construction team is currently working on mechanical, life-safety upgrades. Currently, workers are primarily in the pre-construction prep and planning phase.

“We’re in the demolition stages right now,” said Stephen Connors, BC’s construction project manager. “It’s pretty early in the project.”

The apartment building was built in 1985, and given the building’s age, several upgrades will be made in the years to come. Connors said that initial renovation efforts will focus on getting the building up to residential standards.

Life-safety and new common spaces have been designated as the prime focus of the project to create a livable and social environment for BC students. This will come at the cost of the balconies and a pool previously found at 2000 Comm. Ave.

“Out of concern for the safety and well-being of our students, the balconies will be unavailable for student use,” said Associate Vice President for Student Affairs George Arey. “The pool will be removed and replaced with outdoor common-area space.”

The development will include the addition of lounges and study rooms. BC has also planned for the replacement of windows, the installation of new elevators, and various mechanical upgrades.

“I think it will be a nice building when we’re done,” Connors said. “It’s going to be a pretty busy building.”

The building will be divided into single-bed or double-bed apartments, making up a 540-bed residence hall. This configuration remains true to 2000 Commonwealth Ave.’s original layout.

“[My hope is] that we will create a vibrant and engaging residential community for our campus,” Arey said.

Featured Image by Kristin Saleski / Heights Staff

October 5, 2015