Construction Delays Leave UCSD Short of 1,600 Beds for Fall 2023


Image by Chaz Cepielik-Weeks for The UCSD Guardian

Carter Castillo, News Editor

Construction delays to the Theater District Living and Learning Neighborhood, set to debut in September of this year, have faced several construction delays. It aimed to provide an additional 2,000 beds for students; however, due to the delay, only 343 beds will be available for this upcoming Fall Quarter.

With fewer beds than expected and no plan set forth by UC San Diego yet, it is unclear how the university will meet their reinstated two-year housing guarantee. The housing guarantee means that students will be granted two years of housing on campus, as opposed to previously only being given one year of guaranteed housing. 

In an update on April 27, 2023, UCSD said that incoming Eighth College students will be housed in building Five of the Theater District and overflow students will be housed in Sixth College. However, it is unclear what the university plans to do if more students need housing than rooms they have available, especially given the new housing policy.

The delays mean that the five-building Theater district will open in Fall Quarter with only one building completed.

In a statement to The San Diego Union-Tribune, UCSD said the delays are a result of an unusually wet winter and supply chain issues. The university also stated that the rest of the Living and Learning Neighborhood is expected to open during Winter Quarter 2024. The Theater District will be home to the new Eighth college.

Eleanor Roosevelt College freshman Annika Dengel described her reaction to the news of the delay to The UCSD Guardian.

“Honestly, it’s just disappointing. We are guaranteed two-year housing now, and there’s so many people on waitlists,” Dengel said. “As someone who’s spending a second year living in a triple, I’m happy to even have housing.” 

With the university’s earlier promise to open the entirety of Eighth College by Fall Quarter 2023, current students are concerned with the delay and its repercussions. 

“If students are admitted to this college in the fall, and there’s no housing for them, that would be a disaster,” Dengel said.

An FAQ page posted by UCSD this April states that the Theatre District will have new dining options and additional parking spaces. The university stated that there will be“an approximately 30% increase in onsite parking from the previously existing site condition.” 

According to a presentation on the project update in August 2020, the Theatre District will include more administrative spaces, five classrooms, a 480 seat lecture hall, meeting facilities, dining and retail space, and 360 new parking spaces.

The university was contacted by The Guardian, and was asked what the university plans to deliver for its two-year housing guarantee in Fall Quarter 2023 and when the University became aware of the delay, but they stated they have no new information to report at the time of publication.