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Chico State’s largest student dorm will be closed for at least another year

Triple room in Whitney Hall on July 31, 2019 in Chico, Calif.
Jason Halley
Chico State
Triple room in Whitney Hall on July 31, 2019 in Chico, Calif.

Thousands of Chico State students have called Whitney Hall home over the years. But the dorm on the edge of the university’s campus was closed down last year. The university announced this week that the dorms will not reopen this year, or maybe even at all.

Whitney is the largest student dormitory on campus. At nine stories, it towers over other campus buildings. But the building’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning system needs repair.

“It’s an old building, built in 1969. There are literally hundreds of miles of pipes. Those all need to be replaced,” said Andrew Staples, spokesperson for the university.

Staples told NSPR that the university is still deciding if it’s worth making the repairs.

“We need to evaluate whether we want to dump that much money into an aging facility or if we want to pursue starting from scratch with a new housing facility,” Staples said.

Whitney Hall houses almost a quarter of those in student housing. Staples said the school was still able to accommodate nearly all students while the dorm was closed last year.

“Nearly all the students who got their application in by the 8th of April deadline, we found space for them. It may not have been their top choice dorm but there was residential housing available to them,” he said.

Staples wasn’t sure how long it will be before the hall is ready to take students again if ever but guesses it will be closed at least through the next academic year.

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