South Campus dorms house Aztecs

by Jasmine Bermudez, Senior Staff Writer

After more than two years of construction, South Campus Plaza is now home to 525 students.

The construction project of the housing and retail space began in the fall of 2014, and consists of two buildings, the north tower and south tower. Each tower has six floors.

North Hall will be for upperclassmen and South Hall will be for freshmen.

Residence Hall Coordinator LeRoy Ford said that at capacity, South Campus plaza will house 900 students.

“We will be at capacity in Fall 2017,” Ford said.

The first floors include a lounge area, front desk and gender-neutral restroom. Ford said there will be retail space on the first floor soon.

Vendors will include Trader Joe’s, Eureka, Broken Yolk, Verizon and Wings N Things, Ford said. A parking structure on the west side of the plaza will provide parking for customers.

Ford said the second floor is one of the main areas where students can go to socialize.

He said it consists of a laundry room, office spaces, a star center, a pool table, and a multipurpose room that connects to the outside terrace.

Ford said he is most excited for students to utilize the terrace.

“It is my favorite part of the dorm because students can use it to get away for a bit and enjoy San Diego’s beautiful weather,” he said.

Floors three to six are for residential living.  There are two study rooms on each floor and each dorm room has its own shower.

Ford said that two or three residents occupy each dorm room.

“So far living in the South Campus Plaza has been great,” said business junior and residential assistant Grace Say.

She said she is happy about the location of the plaza.

“We are basically in the heart of campus,” she said. 

Computer science sophomore and residential assistant Christopher Moussa said being closer to campus “changes everything.”

“The students’ will to actually go out and get involved on campus has increased so much just by the quarter mile that we moved,” he said.

Say said that her residents have already started to use the lounge to bond with other residents.

“Every Monday night my floor watches ‘The Bachelor’ together,’” she said. “We also hang out in the study lounge and study together.”

Moussa said being able to take advantage of the technology amenities South Campus Plaza has to offer has been a blessing to him.

“Throughout the buildings there are televisions that I can connect to my laptop,” he said. “I can help myself study with groups and give presentations to other students if they need help with anything.”

Engineering  freshman Ellie Ekstrom said living at the South Campus Plaza is really fun.

“Everything is updated,” she said. “Having your own shower is great, (and) the rooms are bigger and more luxurious.”

Kinesiology freshman Cristian Dela Cruz said that he is excited to use the different spaces in the dorm to hang out with residents and have bonfires on the terrace. He said he also enjoys the view from his room.

“I like to watch the sunset from the window in my room,” he said.

Ford said that moving students from Tenochca Residence Hall to South Campus Plaza was a long process, but he had a great staff that helped a lot.

“South Campus Plaza has a lot to offer and we hope that we are serving our students well,” Ford said.