Construction delays displace area students

For many of Tallahassee collegians, home is not where the heart is, but where the hotel is because of the unfinished construction of apartments. This reality has left many students still living out of their suitcases.

Sweet Bay, Boardwalk at Appleyard, Tuscany Village and Frog Pond are all apartments in which some extent of construction has temporarily left students in a university dorm room such as Osceola Hall, hotel or another location.

“They have all of these kinks to work out and they’re working them out on our time and our money,” said Alison Hall, a third year psychology student from Dallas and a resident of Boardwalk apartments.

However, some refused any accommodations and have made other arrangements.

“I didn’t do the hotel,” Hall said. “I stayed with a friend for what I thought would be three or four days.”

These three or four days turned into almost a month for Hall.

“We were basically homeless for three weeks,” Hall said.

Irene Aihie, 22, who already signed a leasing agreement for Boardwalk is currently living at the DoubleTree hotel “They’re still not sure when we can move in,” Aihie said. “It is a huge inconvenience.”

Aihie said students would not be able to move in to their apartment until late September.

Another inconvenience of living in hotels is students must leave the rooms on football weekends because of previous reservations of football fan, guests and other vacationers.

Students at DoubleTree are unable to return to their hotel rooms until after 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, “I’m staying at a friend’s house and everything that I own is in my car or in storage,” Aihie said.

However, not all college students are upset about their transition into these new apartments.

Seminole Suites residents are pleased about the company’s construction efficiency and their ability to be able to move in on time.

“Everybody [Seminole Suites] was very reassuring that everything would go smoothly,” said Courtney Demings, 19, a sophomore English education student from Orlando who resides at Seminole Suites.

Daniel Clapper, property manager of Seminole Suites explained their effectiveness.

“We knew the importance of the investment that parents have for students to go to school,” Clapper said. “Our main concern is that students did not have to worry about a place to live.”

When asked her thoughts on the other students who have to live in places other than their apartments, Demings responded, “It’s a shame because these companies should not make promises and not live up to their end of the bargain.”

Although it is unsure as to how much longer students will be living outside of their apartments, some residents still have high hopes for their apartment complex.

“I’m pleased with the setup,” Hall said. “I definitely think that Boardwalk is working towards something great.”

Boardwalk was contacted for comment, but declined an interview.