Lofts 54 raises the bar on apartment living

By Jill Disis

Students looking for the best in modern living need look no further than Lofts 54, a new apartment complex that just opened its doors this year.

Unlike residence halls and other apartment buildings, Lofts 54 promises its tenants an extremely sophisticated living experience at 54 E. Chalmers St., an approximate 10 minute walk from the Quad.

Support the Daily Illini in College Media Madness!

Help the Daily Illini take back the top spot in the College Media Madness fundraising competition! See the current ranking here.

learn more
donate now

According to the Lofts 54 Web site, the list of amenities sets the bar high for competing complexes. Wood floors, stone bathrooms and granite counter tops are just the start of what appears to be some of the most pleasant rooms available.

Lofts 54 also promises a rooftop deck with a hot tub, which some of the tenants have dubbed “the Party Deck,” garage parking, flat panel TVs, extended basic cable, Internet service, 9-foot ceilings and more.

“It’s something that draws people,” said Greg Goebel, leasing coordinator at Roland Realty. “I think that it’s a nice product that a lot of students like. Lofts 54 is close to where other friends are.”

Goebel is true to his word. Lofts 54 is situated next to several Greek houses and other apartment buildings in the area. Anyone concerned about getting to campus need not worry, as the MTD bus route runs right by the buildings.

Naturally, the biggest issue at the moment is construction.

“It’s hard to keep the place clean because of the cement,” says Lars Rikardsen, sophomore in LAS. “I think it’s great besides the construction. But everything they promised will be delivered by next year.”

One look inside Lofts 54 will confirm that there is still work that needs to be done.

Fences are still up around some of the outside, and the cement floors inside are still not refined.

This is not to say that the rooms themselves are not both comfortable and clean.

“It’s pretty nice inside. It was nice when we finally moved in,” says Justin Zirbes, junior in Engineering. “They’re still doing the party deck. But it’s close to all of the senior houses, it’s really nice.”

Even with the construction, the overall vision for Lofts 54 is very evident. The large, open space staircase up from the ground looks urban yet classy.

Roland Realty has been getting positive feedback as well.

“A lot of the tenants are very happy with the units and furniture,” Goebel said. “It was near completion when tenants moved in this year.”

Roland Realty currently lists prices for fall 2009 on the Lofts 54 Web site, Six room layouts with an average of 1,200 square feet of space all currently run for $665.00 rent per person. The rental agreement and contact information for Roland Realty are also listed.

Despite a rocky start with construction this year, Lofts 54 will be hard to beat in 2009. When asked if students think it has been worth the wait, Goebel immediately responded: