- Vista del Campo
Vista del Campo (VDC), also known as East Campus Apartments, is a student apartment community built on
University of California, Irvine(UCI) land, and managed by American Campus Communities(ACC). It is one of the pride and joys of the University's campus. It is owned by EAH-East Campus Apartments, LLC, which is controlled by EAH University Properties, Inc., an affiliate of EAH Housing. It has 488 units with 1,488 beds (1,234 for undergraduates and 254 for graduate students) and is currently the most recent property developed and managed by ACC. A second phase, Vista del Campo Norte, owned by the Collegiate Housing Foundationwas opened in Fall 2006, and a third phase, intended solely for graduate students, is in the planning stages.
Combined, the developments are among the largest private-public student housing partnerships. In this case, as in many others, private nonprofits take title to the property so that the projects may benefit from state-issued bonds (with non-taxable interest). Here the bonds were issued by the California Statewide Communities Development Authority in three series. The development and management of the complexes, however, is handled by a private for-profit company, in this case ACC.
Vista del Campo is operated exclusively for the furtherance of the public purposes of the University of California and must comply with the Policies of the Regents of the University of California, UCI Campus Implementation.
After ten years, title to Vista del Campo is scheduled to return to UCI.
Vista del Campo and Vista del Campo Norte have been cited in the "Los Angeles Times" as catering to students as "sophisticated consumers" marketing them as fashionable apartments rather than dorms. Bill Bayless, chief executive of American Campus Communities explains, "When you build them a Class A community like they expect today, and you maintain it impeccably, they take great care of the facility". Vista del Campo appeals to wealthy students. Online availability of Vista del Campo's residents television viewing and consumer habits reveals that the income and consumer patterns reflect relative exclusivity and wealth, with 34% of viewers having an income of above $90,000 a year and 76% displaying high end/upscale consumer patterns.
Opposing this argument, many students view Vista del Campo apartments as impersonal and non-conducive to social interaction. Students complain about the lack of opportunity to meet neighbors and make friends, which is relatively easy to do in the freshman dorms (Middle Earth and Mesa Court) and in other complexes such as Arroyo Vista.
Common issues amongst residents is low water pressure, as the shower and sink faucets are made to restrict water. This can be remedied by removing restriction rings, although this violates lease agreements.
Another common complaint is the size difference between VDC and VDCN: VDC apartments are larger with full beds instead of VDCN's extra-long twins, yet VDCN is actually more expensive.
Lack of cell-phone reception is another major complaint amongst students residing in VDCN. Reception is extremely poor within the complex, even on upper floors. As such, students are often seen lining up mobile phones on apartment windows or even standing in parking lot to make or receive calls.
Finally, the most common complaint is that the internet is extremely slow and often during peak hours completely unusable. The low speeds have been in place since the opening of Vista del Campo. Recently in the Summer of 08, VdC switched from their original provider to the airwaves network which to the surprise of many students has not improved the situation. Internet requests time out and students are often forced to reload pages multiple times to load content. Students who live in VDC/VDCN learn very quickly that school internet assignments must be started "many" hours in advance in order to meet school imposed deadlines. Students moving in for the first time are often very surprised at the poor internet situation, as Arroyo Vista across the street enjoys extremely high internet speeds (as it is part of UCI's ResNet system - not an independent network).
* [http://www.vistadelcampo.com Vista del Campo Website]
* [http://vdchousing.googlepages.com/ VDC Residence Life Website]
* [http://www.studenthousing.com American Campus Communities Website]
* [http://campusj.com/2006/10/29/ucipd-on-vandalism/ CampusJ article on vandalism]
* [http://www.spme.net/cgi-bin/articles.cgi?ID=1306 SPME on vandalism]
* [http://www.latimes.com/features/home/la-hm-dorm23aug23,1,4879775,full.story LA Times student dorm trend article]
* [http://research.backchannelmedia.com/providers/Extensive_Networks_Vista_Del_Campo_Irvine/CA63959/Cable/2007-09-24_23%3A00/0 Blackchannel Media demographic information for VDC Irvine cable]
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