University hopes Lake Campus plan will meet demand for apartments

Princeton is planning to add 500 to 600 beds for graduate students in a new apartment complex on the proposed Lake Campus in four to five years, according to University officials.

A shortage of campus housing has been a perennial concern for graduate students — about 70 percent of regularly enrolled master’s and Ph.D. students live in University housing, but about 90 percent would like to, Princeton officials said. The University hopes to satisfy the demand with the new construction.

The graduate housing will be constructed south of Lake Carnegie on the planned Lake Campus, as recommended in the University’s 2016 campus plan. Other proposals for the new campus include buildings to house academic partnerships and innovation initiatives, new softball and tennis facilities, and a transportation hub.

Princeton is working with two architectural and design firms —Skidmore, Owings and Merrill and James Corner Field Operations — on the Lake Campus master plan, which is expected to be finished later this year. Details of the proposed grad-student housing — including apartment-unit types, building designs, and unit pricing — will be released as part of that document, University officials said. A survey of graduate students will be conducted this spring to help determine the level of interest in different amenities for the new housing facilities.

The University anticipates that the new housing for grad students will be built and managed by a private developer with experience in similar projects at other schools.

In existing University housing for graduate students, monthly rental rates for single students range from $587 to $1,432, while monthly rates for students with partners or children range from $1,258 to $3,240. A 2017 survey found that graduate students would like more affordable on-campus housing options.