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Wednesday, September 20, 2017

MU to make residence hall rooms open to rent for football weekend visitors

Two-bedroom, four-bed suites will be available for $120 a night.

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Courtesy of Cameron Flatt

June 25, 2017

The University of Missouri will open up idle residence halls to weekend visitors this fall. Home football games, August’s solar eclipse, graduation and conferences will all be events where the residence halls are available to rent.

With incoming freshman enrollment down to about 4,000 students, a decrease from 6,419 in the fall of 2015, the university closed seven residence halls with 1,461 beds.

Mizzou hopes to fill some of those beds by renting out two-bedroom, four-bed suites for $120 a night. A website is available for people to reserve the rooms.

Some of the same amenities guests might receive in a hotel downtown will be offered in the residence halls. “Free high-speed wireless access, and economy bed linens and towels are included,” the registration site says.

This option could serve as an attractive alternative for some to staying at hotel such as the Holiday Inn Executive Center, which would cost about $244 a night for two double beds the weekend of the Homecoming matchup on Oct. 21.

To request a reservation, interested visitors must complete the guest housing request form. According to the website, submitting a request does not guarantee a reservation. A Residential Life staff member will then contact prospective visitors within two business days to confirm a reservation.

With the university offering rooms in the residence halls to visitors, hotels in neighboring cities like Kingdom City will likely be hurt most, with Columbia hotels remaining largely unaffected. MU Vice Chancellor for Operations Gary Ward told the Columbia Daily Tribune he does not expect area hotels to complain about competition.

“My understanding, and this would have to be verified with them, is the hotels are full anyway, so we won’t be competing on game days,” Ward said in an interview with the Tribune. “We could be competing with out-of-town hotels.”

Edited by Eli Lederman | elederman@themaneater.com

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