KNOXVILLE (WATE) – The new school year is off to a bit of a rocky start for some University of Tennessee students. Many wanted to live in some brand new apartments right off the Cumberland Avenue strip, but they’re still not ready, even after leases were signed.
Frustrated students planning to move into The Standard this fall are now living in limbo – some staying with friends and others have been put up in hotels. For a little more than a month, senior Mallory Riggins has been living in a hotel, keeping some of her belongings in her car.
“It’s just been a huge lack of communication. It’s not easy because you just never know where anything is,” said Riggins.
This isn’t how she planned to start her senior year.
“I mean this is my third time moving since August 13,” she said.
Riggins is one of hundreds of students having to deal with The Standard not being ready. She says they were supposed to move in on August 13 before classes started, but the project isn’t finished.
“It’s definitely not what I signed up for at all.”
It’s just another level of stress to deal with along with school and work.
“It’s just kind of been an emotional roller coaster figuring out whenever we’re supposed to move in,” said Kaylee Millican, another senior living in a hotel.
The Standard’s spokesperson said delays were caused because of weather and a tight labor market. The spokesperson also said the company is going through a learning curve and initial projections were off.
“We recognize the frustrations created by move-in delays and deeply regret the inconveniences being realized by our residents. Landmark Properties is committed to handling these issues in the best ways possible and improving its projections for future urban infill projects,” said spokesperson Cody Nichelson.
Nichelson also says everyone should be moved in by early October. Some people are getting the chance to move in next week like Shane Gatti, who’s not too optimistic.
“I don’t think they’re going to finish up by then,” said Gatti. “Look at the first floor. They don’t even have a facade up. The walls aren’t even done. It just doesn’t look like something I can move into and live there.”
To help accommodate students, the Standard has been giving them $125 gift cards each week. Students who stay in hotels far from campus get shuttled to in. When The Standard opens, all students will get a free month’s rent.
Students who chose not to stay in hotels are getting an account credit at double the pro-rated rental amount daily.