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Housing project is Illinois State’s first public-private venture

The University will raze Cardinal Court apartments to make way for an 800-bed student apartment complex. Demolition begins in January, with completion expected by August of 2012. The $59.1 million project marks the first time the University has engaged in a public-private housing initiative.

ISU will lease to the Collegiate Housing Foundation (CHF) the 14.5-acre Cardinal Court property on Gregory Street northwest of campus. CHF will create a limited liability company on behalf of Illinois State to construct, finance, and own the complex. When the lease with CHF ends in 40 years, the buildings become Illinois State’s property.

The complex is needed because the University will lose more than 1,500 beds with the closure of Atkin-Colby and Hamilton-Whitten residence halls at the end of this academic year. Other submitted housing proposals are still under review, as the Cardinal Court project will not fully replace the number of beds lost.

Apartments with two, three, and four bedrooms will be available at the new complex, which will be managed by university staff. Sophomore, juniors, and seniors will have 12-month lease options. Freshmen will be required to live in conventional dorms.

The units will have amenities such as a washer, dryer, and dishwasher. The complex will include indoor and outdoor recreation facilities, ample parking, and will be served by Illinois State’s bus transportation system. An enhanced pedestrian walkway will connect the complex to the main campus.


Have many great memories of Cadinal Court (Apartment N149) while an newly married undergrad and later graduate student at ISU with my wife Marge from 1973-1977. Had a student maintenance job picking up trash and cleaning the laundry buildung at Cardinal Court to help pay the bills. My wife completed her BS in 1977. Sad to see it razed but I understand the need for student rooms as ISU continues to improve and grow.

ISU - THE University of Illinois!!!!!!!

I lived in Cardinal Court After the Viet Nam era. We made many friends and all strugled through the times together. We had many good times at Cardinal Court and I remember riding up the Big hill" to classes. My parents frequented the original Steak and Shake in
Normal, Ill. I loved Cardinal Court and loved paying $90.00 per month inclusive. Great times were had and the university was GREAT !!