On Friday, May 9, 2014, SMU dedicated its new Residential Commons complex, enabling all first-year and sophomore students to live on campus and launching the Residential Commons (RC) model campus-wide. The RC model will be implemented campuswide during the Fall 2014 term.
The $146 million complex is the largest capital project in SMU’s history and part of a larger initiative to enhance students’ living and learning experience. New facilities for the nine-acre Commons complex include five residence halls – Armstrong Commons, Kathy Crow Commons, Crum Commons, Loyd Commons and Ware Commons – as well as the Anita and Truman Arnold Dining Commons and the 800-space Mustang Parking Center. The complex will provide campus housing for an additional 1,250 SMU students, enabling nearly 2,750 students to live on campus.
The dedication of the Residential Commons complex “signifies an exciting new chapter in SMU history,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “Each Commons is designed to seamlessly combine the intellectual and social aspects of University life, a concept that will be implemented campuswide in the fall. We are grateful to six generous families for transforming the SMU campus experience.”
Lead gifts of $30 million in total giving have been provided by Liz Martin Armstrong ’82 and Bill Armstrong ’82, Anita Ray Arnold and Truman Arnold, Katherine Raymond Crow ’94 and Harlan R. Crow, Sylvie P. Crum and Gary T. Crum ’69, Penny R. Loyd and Paul B. Loyd Jr. ’68, and Richard Ware ’68 and family.
Each five-story Commons in the new complex will be home to 250 students, a residence life director and a faculty member in residence. The faculty member will serve as mentor and intellectual leader of the community, and has the opportunity to teach a class or host study sessions in the classroom included in each Commons.