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The Antelope

The Antelope

Village Flats welcomes Lopers home


Janicek, residents of Village Flats speak about apartment complex

by Brett Westfall
Antelope Staff

A new year always brings students’ attention to the new construction on and around campus. This year, the big talk was about the substantial three-story apartment complex. Across the street from the University of Nebraska Medical Center, the UNK Village Flats complex has 68 one-bedroom and 31 two-bedroom apartments that are fully furnished with wireless internet, cable, utilities and furniture included.

The Village Flats are open only to graduate students with at least nine credit hours, University of Nebraska Medical Students, students who are married and/or have children and non-traditional students or 21 and older undergraduate students who are enrolled full time.

Floor plans offered to students come in two options. The 700 square foot unit, which is $650 per month for a unit consisting of two full-time students or one full-time student and up to 3 immediate family members. The second is the 435 square foot unit, which is $800 per month and is offered to one full-time student or a full-time student with a spouse. 

The three-story apartment complex is at 2201 University Drive. The complex was built because of a housing shortage in the area, a problem which was explained by Kearney Mayor Stan Clouse during the ribboncutting ceremony on July 31.

“Village Flats really helps with our housing situation, and it should be attractive for students coming to our community,” Clouse said.

Not only was the completion of the $16 million Village Flats a success for UNK Chancellor Doug Kristensen, but it was also the first step in creating an urban community in the 104-acre parcel now owned by UNK. According to a UNK press release, the university’s next step is to build an early childhood development center, and for the next 15 to 20 years and between $400 to $500 million to finish developing Kristensen’s vision of creating an urban community close to campus.

This building’s benefit for UNK’s student population is tremendous. During the ribboncutting ceremony on July 31, not only did Kristensen speak about the start of more to come in the area, but Taylor Janicek, UNK’s student body vice president, also spoke. Janicek is a senior from Bridgeport, Nebraska, studying psychology with a minor in recreational management.

Looking back on the day, Janicek said, “It was an amazing experience, and I was just honored to be there, let alone speak.” Janicek said that the Village Flats are exactly what UNK’s vision should head for, because he said it gives a great opportunity to reach out to a wider student population.

Before the speeches and ceremony, Janicek got to go on a complete tour, inside and out, of the housing complex.

“When you walk in from the front,” Janicek said, “right away there is a unique meeting room surrounded by glass next to the mailboxes called, ‘the clubhouse,’ which should convey a neutral feeling that the room is a place to relax but also a play to be serious and study. But, if you go down the first wing of rooms either to the right or to the left, you instantly feel like ‘home sweet home.’”

As word of mouth spreads and more details on the Village Flats continue over the years, Janicek said that new or upcoming students will want to look into this building as a first option when they feel it is time to move away from the residence halls. “If I had come in as a freshman this year and saw this building,” Janicek said, “I would instantly look into it after I turned 21 because it is so easy, and I am accustomed to doing things from UNK’s facilities. Plus, this is cheaper than most options out there and everything is included. I think it should be everyone’s first option.”

Rachel Smith, a student in her final year at UNMC who lives in the Village Flats, said, “My overall feelings of living in the Village Flats is positive. Not only did I get everything to come fully furnished with all the utilities included, but I have been able to bring in my accents and pictures to make it feel more like home.”

Another resident living in Village Flats, Dane Daigger, also expressed his overall feeling towards living at the new apartment complex. Daigger said, “The complex as a whole feels more like a residence hall by having community laundry, desk assistants and living with other students. However, once in the rooms, it feels like a typical apartment with all the appliances a person would want.”

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