The Hub on campus should be torn down

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The Hub on campus should be torn down

Ian Capobianco, Staff Columnist

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It is August 2018. Students are eagerly packing. With everyone itching to get back to school, it is truly a great time to be a UA student. It is a particularly exciting time for one group of students: the new Hub on Campus residents. They had been patiently watching their future home being constructed for the past nine months. Finally, their new home is ready.

Wouldn’t that have been nice? 

It was once a highly anticipated building, with its shiny amenities and sleek apartments. Needless to say, students were chomping at the bit to move in. I know I was. My “penthouse” could not be ready any faster, which is why I couldn’t believe what I saw when I first walked into my new place.

It was smaller than my Ridgecrest South dorm. I’d even venture to compare it to the luxury shacks offered by Paty Hall. Yes, I’m dead serious. I can tell you what I was promised, though: A beautiful, state-of-the-art penthouse suite on the top floor of the Hub. Which is why I was in disbelief at the closet that I got instead. All for the reasonable price of $1,200 a month.

I was among many new residents who were confused, to say the least, about our new apartments. While we clearly did not get what we were promised, at least we had a place to live. Or so we thought…

As it would happen, the building was an absolute mess. Spotty internet, no hot water, black mold, flooding, raw sewage and other dangerous conditions were rampant. In fact, one person actually fell through their shower down into the room below them. Yes, read that again. You aren’t going insane. What was going on here started to become pretty obvious. The Hub on Campus clearly rushed its construction team to get the building finished in time for move-in. There is no doubt that the pressure was on. Corners were cut.

Emails were sent and fuming parents were reassured. Nathan Cook, the Hub’s property manager, was making his rounds and dispelling fears that the building was unsafe. In fact, the Hub promised residents that they would get thousands in rent credits for their troubles. For a very, very brief time, we thought our apartments would soon be habitable.  

But they never truly got fixed. Oh, and those rent credits? We received about a month’s worth of rent. After that, the bills came in. For many, the problems persisted much longer than one month. The only difference between the first week of move-in and the second month of living there? The Hub stopped caring. Cook stopped caring.

As you might expect, this was not acceptable to the residents and their parents. In no time at all, a juicy class-action lawsuit had been launched against Hub on Campus and the city of Tuscaloosa. The security company paid for by the Hub had been completely let go by the end of the year. The ominous disappearance of the security team could be attributed to the Hub’s lack of money, or maybe the fact that one of its guards assaulted two students on the premises and received two counts of 3rd Degree Assault. 

Nonetheless, the Hub on Campus is a horrendous entity and needs to be demolished.