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February 26, 2017 | by  | in News Splash |
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Boulcott Blues

Boulcott Hall will be closed in 2017 as corrective measures are taken following the 2016 Kaikoura earthquakes.

The 180-bed hall, one of Victoria’s 14 halls of residence, had been on a list of 80 buildings requiring assessment by the Wellington City Council.

On February 13 the university said it would not offer places at Boulcott Hall during trimester one of 2017.

The addition of the 320-bed Capital Hall last year, as well as the leasing of additional beds at 222 Willis Street, has allowed the university to reallocate affected students and to “ensure room for growth and to handle situations like this.”

The university stated that “all of the students who were expected to stay in Boulcott Hall have been reallocated to other halls apart from two residents who we are still waiting to hear from.”

University spokesperson Katherine Edmond said work was due to be completed by May and that there would be “no double bunking.” Her comments came in response to fears of a repeat of a 2016 incident, where the Katharine Jermyn Hall was oversubscribed and left 64 students, who had been offered single rooms, having to share rooms.

One affected student has been reallocated to Te Puni Village with no additional charge “until Boulcott was all safe to re-enter.”

She said she was given the option to go into Boulcott once it became available, but was “quite gutted to find out that I would be in a hall I didn’t actually want to be in.”

The new development also affects the Residential Advisors (RAs) assigned to live and work at Boulcott.

VUWSA President Rory Lenihan-Ikin said “it will affect them greatly in terms of their employment and living arrangements.”

The university said that it “will continue to meet its employment obligations to all staff impacted.”

The closure of Boulcott means there will be less beds than was expected after the university announced it was opening Capital Hall in June 2016. However, the university has stated that the decision not to operate Boulcott Hall this year “will not impact the private renting market.”

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