Story by Abby Siegel, Contributing writer.
Murray State residents are eager to take the Franklin Residential College community to a brand new building after calling the current building home for the past 53 years.
New Franklin Residential College will allow more students to live on campus comfortably. Resident rooms will look similar to Lee Clark Residential College and James Richmond Residential College, with two beds per room, a shared bathroom and additional four bedroom suites.
Jason Youngblood, assistant director for Facilities Design and Construction at Murray State said the project is on time to be completed by summer 2016. Residents will be able to move into New Franklin the following fall semester.
“The blueprints and drawings of the building look gorgeous,” Chandler Cochran, sophomore from Cincinnati, said.
New Franklin will have a first floor common space that can seat up to 150 people. The second floor will be a large game and TV lounge. Additionally each floor will have a study room. This will be a nice improvement because Franklin doesn’t have a television now, Cochran said.
Despite being excited about the look and layout of the new building, Cochran said he was more enthusiastic about the community at Franklin.
“It’s not about the building, its about the people, but it will be nice to live in a building that doesn’t resemble a hospital,” he said.
Cochran said the large common area in the new building will provide opportunities to continue to build the Franklin community in a way that wasn’t possible before because the building was so small.
Only having lived in Franklin a few days, transfer student Mary Kate Markley, sophomore from Marion Ill., said the building isn’t as bad as her colleagues made it out to be, and it is even better than the dorm she lived in at her previous university.
Markley’s father lived in Franklin Residential College during his undergraduate career at Murray State, which attests to the age of the building, she said.
“It’s a dorm room-you can’t ask for a lot,” she said, commenting on the problems with cable and Wi-Fi she experienced upon move in.
When deciding on housing, Markley chose to live in Franklin because of the cheaper cost compared to other residential colleges such as Hester or Richmond.
Although New Franklin will be able to house more residents, many students may still choose the cheaper residential college options for financial reasons.
“It will probably be expensive so I can’t live in New Franklin,” she said.
Markley isn’t the only Murray State resident that has decided the cheaper residential college is the best option.
Laura Litsey, senior from Owensboro, Ky., lived in Hester last year before deciding she could get by in the cheaper option of Franklin.
She said she was pleasantly surprised by her room and loves the large windows.
“I like having a cheaper residential college option,” she said.
Cochran said that not everyone will be able to live in New Franklin, and it will be sad for the Franklin community to lose valuable members, even though it is just a parking lot that divides them.
“I hope it is completed in time,” Cochran said.