Out With The Old And In With The New
Snuggled between the background of the Cal Poly campus and the mountains, lie bright green grassy fields sweeping over the sloping terrain. The brilliance of the sun on the picturesque scenery makes for just the right lighting. The numerous bulls that inhabit the Bull Test Area are lazily slouching in their spacious pen and chomping at their breakfast. Apart from the mellow bovines, on the other side of Brizzolara Creek, the Abattoir sits silently yet eerily by its lonesome, just awaiting its next victim. Adjacent to the Bull Test Area are the Feed Mill and Feed Lot, made up of a large barn and a silo. To the left of these fields, the Drumm Reservoir reflects sparkling bits of sunlight and is surrounded by reeds swaying in the wind. The setting is undisturbed by the stress and noises of the nearby civilization--at least for now. The feeling of tranquility is overshadowed by the impending change from a natural habitat to a civilized one. Within two years the Feed Mill will be replaced with a parking lot, the Feed Lot will be the site for a brand new swimming pool, and the Bull Test Area will be the building ground for apartments and living facilities otherwise known as Student Housing North.
The idea for this building project started in January of 2003. According to Joel Neel, Associate Director in Facilities Planning and Capital Projects, the Master Plan envisioned all new students living on campus with new housing facilities built to include 3000 beds. The reason for this building project was to more than double the student population living on campus. In Student Housing North, these apartments would be more accessible to classes because of the close proximity to campus, much like the Cerro Vista Apartments. Also similar to Cerro Vista, the student population in these apartments would mainly be second years. According to Mr. Neel, the tentative budget for this project is $266 million. Student Housing North’s one million square feet encompasses eleven, five story buildings including suite style living areas as well as two and four person apartments. Along with the living facilities the new development will also include a village center with a variety of stores, recreational space, administration buildings and two parking lots. 
There is one large adjustment that must occur in order to make way for the buildings; the Ag. facilities in that area must move to separate, remote locations. Mr. Neel concedes this problem, but also notes that the constructing of brand new apartments would benefit a greater percentage of the student body. Indeed, the majority of Cal Poly students never set foot on the university’s agricultural lands, let alone the Bull Testing Area. A wider range of students will benefit from new housing facilities so close to the campus core. The project would give the Ag. Department new and improved facilities as well as providing much...