Deborah Rubin: Landmark project picks wrong housing location
To the editor:
I’m a Cushman resident who is opposed to the Landmark “Retreat” for 700 students. I read with interest the article “Game changers: Who are the investors altering Amherst neighborhoods?” Turning neighborhood houses into student rentals with absentee landlords is nothing new. It has happened all over the country in university towns.
Unfortunately, the landlords see good monetary value and students want to live close to the universities and businesses. If the university and town think students will leave the close proximity to the University of Massachusetts Amherst for remote housing on the outskirts of Amherst like the one proposed at Cushman, I think they will be fooled.
Students will always want to live nearby. Location. Location. Location.
I understand that in interviews, students have said The Retreat is too far from campus. We are all concerned about the out-of-control partying that occurs in Amherst. Unfortunately with Twitter and Facebook, partying can go global quickly.
We can’t stop students from using their cell phones. The town and university need to come together and have a serious joint plan to address the many problems. A joint effort to build new off-campus housing within reach of UMass and downtown would be a start.