City of Corvallis denies university residence hall proposal

The City of Corvallis recently declined Oregon State University’s residence hall proposal. The final City Council vote was 4-3 with two members absent. In June 2019 the university proposed the construction of a new residence hall near the intersection of Monroe Avenue and Ninth Street. Although the City of Corvallis declined the proposal, the debate surrounding the residence hall is still ongoing and no further steps have been established at this time. 

According to Patrick Rollens, Public Information Officer for the City of Corvallis, there are still two more steps in the process before a final decision can be made. 

“On August 5, the City Council issued a tentative denial of the request for a major adjustment to the Campus Master Plan,” Rollens said via email. On August 19, Council will review and vote on findings from staff in support of the denial. Depending on the outcome of the vote, the issue may come back one more time for a “second reading,” which will require one more vote. Then it’ll enter a 21-day appeal period, where anyone with standing can appeal the Council’s decision. Where it goes from there depends on any appeals that are filed during that 21-day period.”

“Oregon State University is very disappointed by the city council’s 4-3 decision,” said Steve Clark, vice president of University Relations and Marketing. “We are evaluating what the university’s options are going forward following the council vote. Over the past several years, the university has sought to follow the policies of the city and also the council-approved comprehensive plan that directs the university to make more lower cost housing available on campus for students and staff.”

 According to Clark, the university has spent more than $3 million planning this residence hall project in hopes the city would approve. 

“We disagree with the characterization by some members of the city council that recent housing studies are not accurate or current,” Clark said via email. “These studies that are questioned include one study that the city council itself adopted just weeks ago. The studies say that the Corvallis community has an immediate need for as many as 3,500 additional housing units, including 1,000 or more additional beds for students on campus.”

For any questions, comments or updates contact the Corvallis City Council through their webpage.