History

The Project Groenveld

As part of its statutory mission, the association “Aktief, Mecenaat Pro K.U. Leuven” decided to contribute to the supply of decent rooms for students at a socially acceptable price to have a moderating influence on the room rent in Leuven.

Therefore, the v.z.w. acted as fund acquisition, builder and operator of the now established student residence Groenveld.

Ready for living since October 1992, this property is located on the 76-78-80-82 Celestijnenlaan, 3001 Leuven (Heverlee), close to the Campus Arenberg.

Nearby are the Faculties of Sciences, Engineering, Bio-Engineering and the Institute for Physical Education.

The 320 rooms of the building are divided into four houses, named after G. Mercator, R. Dodoens, J. P. Minckelers and S. Stevin.

Financing

The construction and equipping of the student residence Groenveld amounted to 200 million BF (€ 5 million), which equates to 625.000BF (€ 15.625) per student. This is also the nominal amount of the 320 obligation that the association “Aktief” has issued to finance the project.

The obligations have a maturity of 25 years, bearer and therefore freely tradeable. A bondholder can therefore sell to an interested potential new candidate at any time. The v.z.w. Aktief will mediate in the transaction.

This obligation is linked to a financial return which includes an interest and a capital gain. In addition, a tenancy is offered.

Interest is annually payable after the expired period on the first of October of each year, starting October 1, 1993 and the last time on October 1, 2017. The interest rate itself is evolving at five-yearly periods from 5.0% to 7.4% and is annually applied to the nominal amount of the obligation.

It evolves as follows:

from 1.10.1992 to 30.09.1997: 5.0% or 31,250 BF per year

from 1.10.1997 to 30.09.2002: 5.5% or 34,375 BF per year

from 1.10.2002 to 30.09.2007: 6.1% or 38,125 BF per year

from 1.10.2007 to 30.09.2012: 6.7% or 41,875 BF per year

from 1.10.2012 to 30.09.2017: 7.4% or 46,250 BF per year

Besides the annual interest a capital value is attached to the obligation. Indeed, at the end of the term, this is on October 1, 2017, the obligation is repaid at the price of 1,000,000 BF (€25.000). This is a capital increase of 60% or a cumulative annual increase of 2%.

In addition to the financial return the obligation is related to a tenancy.

This ensures each obligationholder or a person designated by him the right to rent a room for the coming academic year at the established moderate rental. In the academic year 1992-1993, this amounted to 5,500 BF (€137) per month rent plus the cost of energy. This rent is also linked to indexation of 3.5% applicable from October 1, 1993.

Conclusion: The interest and capital return settled each year give in fact an average annual return of nearly 7%. The financial return must be increased with the assurance that a proper resting position and socially friendly dorm room can be rented at a moderate price.

If the obligationholder wishes to make use of his tenancy, he must notify each year by 31 July the association Aktief.

Living structure

As already mentioned the residence contains 4 houses. Each dormitory accommodates 80 people divided into autonomous living groups of 8 students. Each living group has:

Students who participate in the management of the residence (see below) will be offered a larger room.

In the basement is the bicycle storage room. At the front of the building parking spaces are provided.

Each student has the standard furniture:

The heating is electric with individual counter. The cost of consumption in the common areas are evenly distributed over the 8 users.

Living culture

The residence's aim to live and work together is inspired by the mission statement of the university. Following quotes from this mission statement serve as a guide:

"Its programs integrate professional training in a broad ethical, cultural and social development."

The residence offers the opportunity, in addition to the education that students enjoy themselfs, to work on their ethical, cultural and social awareness from their living environment. A harmonious cohabitation of young people from diverse social backgrounds and of different nationalities requires clear rules and accepted codes of conduct.

The living process in group offers the chance to create respect for each other's habits, values, thinking and development. Novices will find a network of people who already move on the freer, more confident way within the university environment. Cohabitation of 8 students, with different views, studies and social origins gives rise to further development and growth into adulthood.

Living togheter with foreign students gives enormous opportunities to exchange experiences, opinions, values and rules. This leads to greater insight and therefore more understanding of other cultures.

"Special attention goes to the continuous evaluation of its education with a view to increased self-motivation of the students."

Groenveld calles upon the commitment of students for co-management of the residence. Each living group has its own “hallway responsible”. There is also, per 40 students, a “block responsible”. This appeal to the efforts of students increases their personal commitment and makes them share in the "care" for the house in which they live. Also creation of a healthy learning environment belongs to this concern.

Both hall and block responsibles have an input to the development of the home phylosophy and thinking about the daily management of Groenveld. To this end, these students, have meetings at regular times led by the resident.

"It promotes the ability to identify, formulate and solve problems."

Life as an individual in group offers tremendous opportunities and benefits but also gives rise to frictions that need to be resolved.

The community structure leads to finding solutions that everyone can support. It gives an opportunity to reallocate hard views to viable contracts.

In Groenveld people don’t live alone!

Residential Management

A resident, Karen Goderis, with a degree in Social Sciences, is responsible for the daily management of "Groenveld". She strives to manage the whole of 320 student rooms as efficiently as possible, but with due attention for the existing "human capital".

Working on a warm welcome for the students, listening to their experiences, exchanging ideas, giving confidence, supporting and possibly adjusting intentions of students are among the concerns of the resident and make that a familiar environment can florish.

A correct attitude towards the students as beeing young adults with an own opinion is an obvious attitude.