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Lafayette representatives will be meeting with residents of the College Hill neighborhood Wednesday night, Jan. 25, to share updated plans for new mixed-used residence halls with public spaces, and to discuss options for alleviating parking congestion in the area.

“We are grateful for the time and dedication that representatives of the College Hill Neighborhood Association and the Village on College Hill have given to this project,” says Roger Demareski, vice president for finance and administration. “Their input has helped shape a design which meets the needs of the College and integrates nicely with the neighborhood.  We look forward to their continued participation in the process.”

Hubert Etchison, executive board member of the College Hill Neighborhood Association, recently reflected on how working in partnership with the College and the City of Easton has been an evolutionary win for everyone.

“Change is always a difficult thing for a neighborhood,” says Etchison, “but working with the team from Lafayette, as well as the city, has produced a team approach to the development that I think we will all be proud of in the end.”

“The design has come a long way,” he adds, “and, now that we are focused on the parking plan, we are getting to a satisfying place.   I believe this will be a model for future interactions between Lafayette and the community as the College grows.”

The College will share plans for four housing projects, three of which would feature street-level retail, including a bookstore, diner, medical-services facility and other uses. Two of the projects could be completed by August 2019, adding beds for 184 students.

The College is projecting enrollment growth of about 400 students over the next eight years to accommodate additional qualified students who currently are denied admission because the College lacks sufficient financial aid.

To address neighborhood concerns about parking congestion, the College will share analyses showing it has a current surplus of 331 parking spaces and anticipates the surplus grow to 453 spaces by 2023, when Lafayette will near the end of its enrollment growth. The College plans to add new parking spaces and to require students living in the new residence halls to park on campus, not on the streets surrounding the new housing.

Representatives of the College, Easton, and the College Hill neighborhood will be exploring additional on-street-parking regulations that would ensure adequate parking for residents and retail establishments near the College.

The College plans an open meeting for the campus community to discuss the plans on Feb. 2.

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