Education · Merced

A different housing crisis: UC Merced seeks Fall start delay over student apartment crunch

A unique housing crisis is sending a Valley university scrambling to delay the start of the 2021 school year.

More than 1,000 students at the University of California, Merced are still hunting for a place to live ahead of the resumption of in-person teaching at the 10th UC campus after the coronavirus pandemic.

UC Merced is slated to start school on Aug. 25, but officials are now seeking approval from the UC Office of the President to delay instruction for another week to enable students additional time to secure housing.

The stumbling block in housing for students has proven to be the Merced Station apartment complex, located near the university campus and build for students.

The project was set to open ahead of the 2021 school year. Construction delays, however, have teetered its partial opening into early September with an undetermined full completion date.

University officials proposed the delay in instruction owing to the fact that it is unable to continue hybrid instruction options moving forward.

More than 500 Merced Station lessees are set to be provided lodging in local hotel rooms until their apartments are available, the university said via email.

Alex Tavlian is the Executive Editor of The San Joaquin Valley Sun and Executive Director of Valley Future Foundation. You can reach Alex at alex.tavlian@sjvsun.com.