New furniture fills Miami residence halls
Published: Thursday, August 23, 2012
Updated: Thursday, August 23, 2012 23:08
Some Miami University students moved back to campus this year to find brand new furniture awaiting them in their residence halls.
According to Elaine Brandner, Miami’s senior interior designer, new furniture was installed in six residence halls across campus over the summer as a part of Housing, Dining, Recreation and Business Services’ long-range housing plan.
The new furniture consists of new beds, dressers, desks, mobile pedestals, chairs, mirrors and wardrobes in halls where built-in closets have been removed, Brandner said. Dodds, MacCracken, Ogden, Richard, Stanton and the Miami Inn residence halls received the new furniture.
According to Brandner, the furniture was chosen after students, Residence Life staff, Purchasing staff, residence hall managers and the carpentry shop reviewed several options. The furniture was then put out to bid, and Adden Furniture was awarded the bid, Brandner said.
The furniture cost $1,135 per set, and the university took advantage of low interest rates to borrow money by selling bonds to pay for the improvements, Brandner said.
Brandner said the goal was to provide students with more flexible and residential furniture.
Students have the ability to adjust the height of the new beds, which provides more options for arranging the other furniture, Brandner said.
“Students have the options of all these different [bed] heights,” Brandner said. “Several pieces can slide underneath.”
Sophomore Kelly Hendrickson said the flexibility of the new furniture gives her more space in her room.
“I think I actually have more storage than space this year,” Hendrickson said. “I live in a triple and it makes the room even bigger.”
Students also have options in terms of their desks, Brandner said. The new desks are “split desks” that can be put with the mobile pedestal to create a larger desk.
“If you want it to be larger, you have the ability to make it larger, Brandner said. “It’s a lot of flexibility for students.”
The new desk chairs also provide options. The new chairs are on castors, but can also be detached and used as gaming chairs, with a base that be used as a laptop surface, according to Brandner.
These new chairs also replaced the old tilt-back chairs in 12 residence halls across campus, according to Brandner. Since many students tend to bring their own desk chairs, the university is working to replace all the tilt-back chairs on campus, Brandner said.
According to Brandner, new furniture will be installed as halls are updated.
“As we’re renovating we’re replacing,” she said.
The new furniture also has a darker cherry finish, which gives the rooms a “more residential” feel, Brandner said.
Junior Leah Hastedt said she agrees.
“It definitely feels more homey,” Hastedt said.
Hastedt said she was surprised when she saw the new furniture on move-in day.
“At first moving in it was kind of weird because I missed my desk,” Hastedt said. She said initially she missed the shelving that went with the old desks, but has warmed up to having all the surface area of the new desk.
Miami also used the furniture replacement as a way to give back, Brandner said. Initially, the furniture was put up on a website for bidding, but when that process was proving unsuccessful, Miami turned to Adden Furniture. The company was able to load up the old furniture and distribute it to people in need in North Carolina where their headquarters is located, according to Brandner.
Hastedt said she wasn’t aware the university had given the old furniture to people in need, but said she thought it was neat the furniture could go to a good cause.
“That’s another reason to embrace the change even more,” Hastedt said.