ALLENDALE — Students at Grand Valley State University will pay 1.6 percent more for room and board beginning with the fall 2013 semester, according to a vote of the board of trustees vote Friday.

The cost per semester in a traditional living center at Grand Valley will be $2,740, an increase of $40. Students can choose from a variety of meal plans. The cost for the 14-meal plan per week per semester will increase $40 and cost $1,300.

This year’s increase at Grand Valley is significantly less than the five-year average of 2.5 percent and less than the five-year state average increase of 3.3 percent.

The fall 2012 occupancy rate at Grand Valley was again at an all-time high with 5,855 students living on campus. Campus dining plans have also reached an all-time high with 7,387 students purchasing a meal plan. That means students who don’t live on campus still choose to use campus dining.

“We’re obviously pleased with our housing options as well as our dining options because the students are pleased,” said Andy Beachnau, director of housing. “Studies show that when students make good campus connections they tend to stay in school and achieve their educational goals right along with their social goals.”

GVSU’s board also approved the purchase of real estate on the northeast corner of 48th Avenue and Luce Street in Allendale for $315,000. University Counsel Tom Butcher told trustees that the purchase makes sense because it’s next to land the university already owns. Its future use has not been decided.

The board also approved the construction of Laker Marketplace, a combination bookstore and food service center. It will replace the current university bookstore in the Kirkhof Center. The two-story marketplace will cover 44,000 square feet, and will cost $12 million. The project will be funded by revenue from the university bookstore. Construction will begin in July 2013 and be completed in summer 2015.


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