Housing near ready

WHEELING – The finishing touches are being put on a new three-story, 36-unit apartment building that will be used by Wheeling Jesuit University’s graduate and adult students.

Officials on Monday gave a tour of one of the completed units. The entire building – dubbed the Cardinal Commons – is expected to be finished by Aug. 23.

The structure is located along Washington Avenue beside the school’s campus. Parking is situated behind the building, with additional parking available via steps and a walkway up a hill onto the campus. The apartments will be fully furnished and include a couch, armchair, bed, dresser, chair, refrigerator, stove and microwave. There are 18 single-bedroom units and 18 two-bedroom units. Each bedroom has its own bathroom.

“We have high standards for our students,” said Justin Tyler Owens, the director of residence life at the facility.

Mike Schatzel, Bedway Development Corporation building superintendent, said six units are considered Americans With Disabilities Act compliant. Two units are wheelchair accessible and located on the first floor, and another four are hearing impaired rooms. The hearing impaired rooms have flashing red lights to alert the person of a fire.

Officials did not know the exact cost of the rent for the apartments, but said rent will likely will be comparable to what the school charges for its dormitory rooms. Security cameras will be installed in the front and rear of the I-shaped building.

Some units have balconies, which Schatzel said are soundly constructed, and it would be “very unlikely” the features would ever collapse from the weight of a group of people standing on them. Owens said there are only eight people allowed inside each unit at any time, including the renters themselves.

“I’ve talked with a number of our graduate students, and they are very anxious and excited for the Cardinal Commons to be completed. We appreciate Double J Realty’s fast pace during the last few months,” said WJU President Rev. James Fleming.

Bedway Development Corporation constructed the building that is owned by Double J Realty. The school will lease the property from Double J and lease the units to the students. A graduate student is considered someone in a graduate program, and adult student is considered someone at least 22 years old, Owens said.