University of Maryland students who signed leases at the Aspen Heights apartment complex will have to reside in hotel rooms until at least mid-September after Aspen Heights announced a delayed opening last week.
Aspen Heights’ community manager Nino Matheny informed student residents in an email on Aug. 7 that the complex will put students in temporary housing due to the lack of permanent utilities in the new apartment complex.
On Monday, one week after the initial email, an Aspen Heights employee noted the utilities are now installed. But the apartment complex is awaiting approval by Prince George’s County and a Prince George’s County Use and Occupancy Permit, according to the city of College Park in an email to The Diamondback. The Prince George’s County department of permitting, inspections and enforcement did not respond to a request for comment.
“While our general contractor is doing everything in their power to resolve the issue as soon as possible, they anticipate the earliest we will be able to get residents moved in will likely be mid-September,” Matheny’s email said.
Until then, Aspen Heights has partnered with local hotels for temporary housing, according to the email.
From Aug. 19 to Aug. 25, students who signed leases with Aspen Heights will live at hotels about 3.5 miles away from this university’s campus, the email said. Then, from Aug. 26 until they can move in, students will be moved to The Hotel at the University of Maryland and Cambria Hotel.
Junior elementary/middle special education major Tori Hogan, an incoming resident at Aspen Heights, said she is both excited and worried about her move to the new apartment complex. Because of the delayed opening, she said she decided to stay at home for an extra week to avoid moving between hotels.
“I’m actually pretty much almost completely packed because I was ready to leave on the nineteenth,” Hogan said. “It’s definitely not Aspen’s fault that this is happening… Aspen’s doing everything they can to make this a smooth transition.”
To help offset the inconvenience, Aspen Heights is providing students with a $30 daily stipend for the duration of the delay and up to a $100 reimbursement for storage fees, last week’s email said.
This isn’t the first time Aspen Heights’ delayed a move-in date for students.
Last February at Washington State University, the local Aspen Heights complex told students they could not move into the apartments they signed leases for because the units would not be ready as promised.
Some residents lost more than $1,000 and others had to find their own replacement housing, according to reporting from The Daily Evergreen, Washington State’s student-led newspaper.
Hogan said she appreciates that Aspen Heights secured temporary housing for students at this university.
“They made this something that’s really easy to do and to get around,” Hogan said.
Aspen Heights is working to get students moved into their new apartments as soon as possible, Matheny wrote in the email.
“We understand you are eager to get settled into your new home, and this delay is a disappointment,” the email said. “But please know that it is our priority to take care of our residents and minimize this inconvenience as much as possible until we can get you moved into your brand-new Aspen apartment home.”
CORRECTION: A previous version of this story misstated that Aspen Heights is awaiting city approval to allow residents to move in. The apartment complex is waiting for approval by Prince George’s County. This story has been updated.