The University of Louisville is looking to demolish two decades-old residence halls where hundreds of freshmen live, and build at least one new hall, if not two, on its main campus.
The Louisville Courier-Journal reports that Miller Hall and Threlkeld Hall are on deck for demolition, according to a request for proposals that the university has issued as it searches for an architectural and engineering firm to design one of the proposed residence halls.
Collectively, Miller and Threlkeld are home to about 550 first-year students, according to the university's website. They were constructed in the 1960s and have had problems with mold in recent years.
In fall 2018, the university dealt with a "mold-like substance" at Threlkeld Hall. An official said at the time that fewer than 10% of the students living there had filed complaints about mold that semester. In 2012, more than 200 students had to move out of Miller Hall because of problems with mold.
Tom Hardy, director of campus housing, says mold issues are not the reason the university wants to replace the residence halls. Rather, he says, it's simply because both buildings are antiquated.
"The honest truth is if you look at both Threlkeld and Miller ... they're not what our students want nowadays," Hardy says. "I think it's important that we make sure that students have more technologically advanced residence halls."
The university plans to build a 450-bed residence hall that would open in August 2021. It also is looking at building another 450-bed hall that could open in August 2022.
The cost of the project of tearing down both halls and building two new ones would total nearly $71 million, Hardy says.
The university had been looking to renovate and expand Threlkeld Hall, but now it's looking at demolishing and replacing Threlkeld entirely.
The two residence halls wants to build would accommodate more students than Threlkeld and Miller do.
"The more residents you have, the more sense of community you have (and) the more people are involved on campus," Hardy says.