North Island College expects to have student housing built by 2022. File photo

Student housing project enters design phase

North Island College is moving ahead with initial architectural design work for a new student housing project at its Comox Valley campus.

Vancouver-based Dialog Design will undertake the schematic, or ‘indicative design’ of the project, which includes site plan, floor plans and mechanical systems.

“This level of design is necessary in order to achieve an accurate project cost estimate necessary to finalize our business case for submission and funding approval by the provincial government,” NIC said in a statement. “We intend to complete this phase of design work late this fall, and hope to achieve support from the provincial government early in the new year.”

The construction budget is about $28 million.

Housing complexes will include 148 single units and 20 family units, expected to open in the fall of 2022. The plan is to build the units on two sides of the campus — next to the Aquatic Centre near the Ryan/Lerwick intersection, and on the western perimetre. Housing will include spaces for students to socialize and learn, and outdoor amenities such as half-court basketball.

In an interview earlier this year, NIC president John Bowman said rents will be affordable, likely in the $500 to $600 range.

The priority is to house domestic students, though Bowman expects a significant proportion of the housing will be occupied by international students.

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