A building on the University of ...
Denver Post file
A building on the University of Colorado at Denver campus.

The University of Colorado Denver’s first on-campus dorm is expected to cost $10 million more than originally anticipated to account for escalating construction costs, flood plain protection and as officials plan to expand the building to add more student beds.

The residence hall — pitched as a way to increase enrollment of international, out-of-state, full-time and undergraduate students — scored approval Wednesday from the CU Board of Regents. The project will cost more than $78 million.

One reason for the ask: making rooms bigger so three roommates can fit instead of two, said Cary Weatherford, director of CU Denver’s institutional planning.

“It would be a safety valve if demand is even greater than projected,” Weatherford said.

The dorm was originally intended to house 550 students, but the enlarging of rooms could bring the count to 745 beds on the historically commuter downtown Auraria campus.

The building is planned to stand six to seven stories tall, built on an existing recreation field adjacent to the Auraria Campus’ Rob and Lola Salazar Student Wellness Center.

CU Denver students interested in living on campus would see a proposed price tag between $3,600 and $5,300 per semester, per student depending on whether students lived alone or with roommates. Meal plans are not included in those prices.

The university expects to begin housing students in the new dorm in the fall of 2021.