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Students Demand Flexibility, Bandwidth

flexible spaces

Digested from Multi Housing News

Offering flexible spaces is the one way student housing providers can meet study needs. But there are other things they need to consider when providing amenities.

When considering what college students want out of their amenity spaces, one word comes to mind for Jim Kirby, Executive Vice President of Acquisitions, GMH Capital Partners. That word is flexibility.

Sometimes students want to study by themselves. Other times, they want a collaborative setting. They need spaces that can meet both of those needs.

“We think ‘flexible’ amenities will be trending,” Kirby tells Multi Housing News’ Adina Marcut. “Spaces that can be manipulated by our residents will be critical. An example of this is retractable walls that can turn five linear study lounges for four residents into a large conference room for 20, or more people.”

Internet connections must also accommodate collaboration. “Students are attending colleges and universities with multiple devices and the need for online classwork, collaboration, social media, and entertainment [i.e. gaming, movie and television etc.] continues to increase,” Kirby says. “Therefore, our communities must feature strong signals and easy connectivity, yet still be secure and manageable during peak hours.”

Technology is not just for studying or streaming. It also plays a role in fitness. “Fitness centers are crucial and will evolve with online fitness features and cardiovascular machines with interactive abilities, so students can run/ride with their friends nationwide,” Kirby says. “Further adding to the wellness point, vending machines that once contained soda and chips are now featuring healthy snacks—like pita chips and fresh salad bowls—vitamin water and sports drinks.”

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