West Campus Green creates more housing options, removes hub of activity for students on campus
As the West Campus Green project gets underway, it takes away a space students once utilized and highlights challenges associated with finding and using new spaces.
April 11, 2023
Construction for West Campus Green, the affordable student housing project, began this spring. Before trucks and materials occupied the site, two astroturf fields, which various clubs and students utilized as recreational hangout spots, held its place.
The West Campus Green project will feature 750 units for first-year students, a new Gator Health Center, a dining hall, meeting and study spaces. SF State received an Affordable Housing Grant from the state, $116.3 million which covered the majority of the project’s cost.
Cade Forero, a first-year astronomy major, started skateboarding his freshman year of high school and recently picked the hobby back up in college. The pavement surrounding West Campus Green was his go-to skate spot on campus because there was little risk of property damage. Its flat surface and big area could be shared with other students.
“It’s kind of a bummer, just because I used to just go there in between classes,” Forero said. “So now I just go back to my dorm and just hang out, but before I would be like, ‘West Campus Green is free and there’s a bunch of guys there who would always be skating.’ So it was a good way for me to socialize with people who I don’t know.”
Even though the West Campus Green project forces skateboarders to find a new area to skate, Forero said it’s an important addition to the campus.
Trinity Acfalle, founder and president of the Women’s Rugby Club, is a third-year political science and international relations major who previously used West Campus Green to practice rugby once a week. The team has now moved to the public soccer field next to the Mashouf Wellness Center.
“When we had West Campus Green, I’m not gonna lie to you, it kind of felt nice, because [we didn’t have a] certain priority, but we had presence,” Acfalle said.
Acfalle said the move to the smaller soccer field presents challenges in terms of timing because others will try to use the field when she has a reserved time slot. Acfalle has found fields at USF as well to ensure she has more time to practice.
Vasiti Leweniqila, a freshman majoring in civil engineering, used to hang out at West Campus Green with friends to play volleyball or toss a frisbee. Finding a new place to hangout has been tough.
“I think it’s definitely harder, because West Campus Green was a field where you could just do whatever and the soccer field [next to Mashouff] is always filled,” said Leweniqila.
Leweniqila sees the new dorms as a nice addition, but there are things to be fixed in the already existent ones. She put an effort into getting things fixed, but it’s a hit and miss with maintenance.
When Leweniqila and her roommate came back from winter break, their floor was soaking wet because their window leaks water when it rains. She contacted dorm maintenance about the leak but they haven’t responded — not even after two months. The SF State administration was contacted about the matter but no response was received.
“Our window leaks water every time it rains, the washing machines are always out of order, the dryers are always out of order, we have spiders in our dorm, and I’ve heard other [dorm rooms] have ants,” Leweniqila said.
In terms of alternative spaces students can utilize, there are a few—the all-purpose field next to Mashouff Wellness Center, Cox Stadium, or the Quad. The West Campus Green project is estimated to be completed in the fall semester of 2024.