Northeastern Housing Crisis
By Ananya Kulkarni
When most freshmen receive Northeastern’s acceptance letter in the midst of the exciting and chaotic college admission cycle, they begin to imagine days spent reading out in the centennial common, working in the shiny, new Curry Student center and cramming for exams in the popular Snell Library. Unfortunately, for the class of 2025, this will not be the case.
Due to a record-high number of applications to the university this past two academic years, Northeastern aimed to accept more students than ever, both on and off-campus through programs such as NU I.N. and NU Bound which allow students to spend their first semester or first year elsewhere.
Due to COVID restrictions, however, Northeastern had to come up with a new solution to process the students accepted through the NU I.N. who were unable or unwilling to go abroad due to the potential dangers of COVID or becoming stuck abroad due to travel restrictions.
But along with the Spring semester came a new problem, what to do with all the students who returned from the NU IN programs abroad. Northeastern expected approximately 3000 students who would require housing after returning from their first semester abroad but the questions became where to put them all.
As Northeastern continues to push out into neighboring communities, they pose challenges to the residents who had existing homes in the area but are driven out by increasing prices due to the development of new apartment complexes to accommodate students off-campus.
Changes in Boston Neighborhoods over the years...
In the images above, one can see how redlining impacted the creation of Boston neighborhoods dating back to 1938. Continuing to move through the slides one can observe how many of those same neighborhoods have become the victims of significant gentrification today.
As a university that represents progressive views, it is important for the administration to take into account the school's impact on what existed in this area before them and to pledge to respect those communities, as Northeastern grows as an institution where it sits at the heart of Boston.