Johnson Hall Closing FAQs

Johnson Hall Closing Frequently Asked Questions

Residential Life and Housing is continuing to assess and monitor air quality related to humidity, moisture, and mold in Johnson Hall. As noted in our email to all building residents on October 27, 2021, we worked with the VCU Office of Environmental Health and Safety to bring in an outside contractor to complete an air quality assessment throughout the building. 


GENERAL FAQs

Is Johnson Hall closed?

Yes, as of November 23, 2021, Johnson Hall is closed for the remainder of the academic year. All residents must check out of Johnson Hall and return their key by 4 p.m. Friday, December 3, 2021. 

Why has Johnson Hall been closed?

Out of an abundance of caution and in an effort to address the elevated mold levels with appropriate remediation and cleaning, we have determined that it will be necessary to close Johnson Hall for the remainder of the academic year.


AIR QUALITY AND MOLD

Is there an update of the air quality of Johnson Hall?

Following our email communications on October 27, 2021, we tested the additional spaces throughout Johnson Hall on November 1 through November 5. As of November 23, 2021, we inspected 228 spaces throughout the building and 41 of those spaces were found to have an elevated spore count of mold when compared to the outside reference sample. 

What has been done to address this?

As noted in our email to all building residents on October 27, 2021, we worked with the VCU Office of Environmental Health and Safety to bring in an outside contractor to complete an air quality assessment throughout the building.

What should I do if I am concerned about exposure to mold?

Mold can be found in almost every environment around the world and exposure does not generally cause illness in healthy individuals. Certain individuals can be sensitive to mold and immunocompromised people can be at a higher risk from exposure. If you have been experiencing respiratory symptoms (coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath or facial pain and a stuffy nose) you should consult a healthcare provider. If you have a significant immunocompromising condition (such as active cancer on chemotherapy or having a history of organ transplantation on medications to suppress your immune system) and you have been exposed, we also recommend being evaluated by a health care provider. These symptoms are similar to the common cold, flu, and Covid-19 and symptomatic persons should be evaluated for potential causes. https://www.cdc.gov/mold/faqs.htm

What if I am concerned that my personal belongings may have been exposed to mold?

We recommend that you review the CDC guidelines about inspecting and treating your personal items.  Mold growth was not observed on clothing or personal items during the room assessments, however bedding or clothing with possible mold growth should be laundered with clean water and detergent. Additionally, all students have access to use any of our VCU residence hall shared laundry facilities (Brandt, Rhoads, GRC and Honors) and their VCUcard will allow them access to use those laundry rooms.  

Will I receive information about my room’s air quality assessment?

Students living in Johnson Hall will receive an email notifying you of the results of your specific room.

Are we testing all residence halls?

If you have a facility concern in your room, please submit a work order through the following link: https://housing.vcu.edu/help/fix/. At this time, we will continue to monitor individual requests. As a preventive measure, we are asking residents to ensure that individual windows in each room remain closed, as leaving windows open can allow additional moisture into the building. Additionally, please leave your thermostat in the auto setting as this allows the system to work properly.  


COST AND FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE

What is the cost to stay on campus?

There will be no additional housing fees charged to students who are relocated to alternative on-campus residential buildings. 

What is the cost to move off campus?

Any student who chooses to cancel their housing contract for the remainder of the semester will receive a prorate as of Sunday, November 28, 2021 and an additional $250.00 incentive credit to their student account. Any student that cancels their housing contract for the remainder of the academic year will receive a prorate as of Sunday, November 28, 2021 and receive an additional $500.00 incentive credit to their student account.

What if I need financial assistance?

Grant assistance is available to students affected by this relocation. Students may contact their Student Financial Management Center financial counselor within Navigate to schedule an appointment by December 16, 2021. Your financial counselor can help you determine potential moving expenses such as: housing deposit, first/last month rent, utility deposits, or other expenses related to relocation.


ACADEMICS AND FINALS

How does this impact my ability to prepare for finals?
If your professors have allowed you to complete coursework virtually this semester, we suggest you stay home and submit to cancel your housing contract. If you need additional academic support, please reach out to the Dean of Students at vcudean@vcu.edu or visit dos.vcu.edu.

What are students supposed to do about in-person classes?

We have notified all faculty of students in Johnson Hall directly, so that they are aware of the situation and they are being asked to be flexible with students. Students have also received an email providing sample emails that can be sent to professors that ask for flexibility, such as an extension of a due date. Those faculty are prepared to work with you on those assignments as necessary.

Will I be able to receive tutoring before finals?

Students have received an email that includes many additional support resources, both virtually and on campus, including contact information from the Campus Learning Center.


RELOCATION AND NEW HOUSING ASSIGNMENTS

Where are students being relocated to?

Students that chose to not cancel their housing contract have been relocated based on on-campus housing vacancies and other alternative housing options within the Greater Richmond area that have been identified and assigned by Residential Life and Housing. Those off-campus housing options include: 8 ½ Canal Street, The Lofts at Capital Garage, 1200 West Marshall, and the Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown.

Is my new Fall housing assignment going to be my spring housing assignment too?

Some of the housing assignments are for the remainder of the academic year and some of the housing assignments are only for the remainder of the fall semester. The email containing housing reassignment information specifies whether or not your assignment is for the rest of the academic year, or only until December 22. If your assignment is only until December 22, then we have also provided more information about the Spring assignment timeline. 

If students paid for a single room, have they been moved to another single room?

Due to the urgency of this situation and limited vacancies across campus and within the greater Richmond community, we cannot guarantee that students received  an identical room type. Should your room type change, you will be billed for the lesser amount next semester (EXAMPLE: If you were assigned to a single and transition to a double, you will be billed at the double rate next semester). 

Can students ask for new roommates? If I have a friend who does not have a roommate, can I move in with them?

Unfortunately, we're not able to take requests like that at this point in the semester. We're happy to assist with room relocation later, if that's something of interest and if there's other parties willing to change as well.

Will my student badge still get me into other campus buildings?

Yes, you will still have guest access in other residence halls.

When can I pick up my belongings from Johnson?

Whether you cancel your housing contract or utilize alternative housing options provided by Residential Life and Housing, you must return to collect your belongings from Johnson Hall by Friday, December 3, 2021 at 4pm. 


AMENITIES (DINING, MAIL, AND LAUNDRY)

Will dining plans be reimbursed/prorated if the student decides to cancel their Fall Housing contract?

Dining plans are still highly encouraged for all first-year residents. Students have the option of keeping or canceling their dining plan for the remainder of the Fall semester*. Students that cancel their Fall housing contract are eligible to receive a credit based upon the unused portion of the fall semester student dining plan (remaining meals and dining dollars) starting Monday, Nov 29. If you would like to have your remaining fall semester meals and dining dollars credited to your student account please email VCU Dining Services at dining@vcu.edu.

*Residents remaining in on-campus housing facilities that do not provide an in-room kitchen will still be required to have a meal plan.

What do students do about their mail?

  • If you have been relocated to on-campus housing you should begin utilizing your new housing assignments' address and mailroom. Click here to view addressing and mailing information for all Residence Halls. 
  • If you have been relocated to off-campus housing at 8 ½ Canal Street, The Lofts at Capital Garage, or 1200 West Marshall, you may continue to send mail and packages to your Johnson Hall mailing address. You have the option to either continue to pick up your mail from the Residence Hall Central Mail and Package Center, located at 207 N Laurel Street, or you may receive mail through the mail center in your new building assignment. If so, follow the mailing instructions provided by the apartment complex.
  • If you have been relocated to off-campus housing at Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown, you may continue to send mail and packages to your Johnson Hall mailing address. You will continue to pick up your mail from the Residence Hall Central Mail and Package Center, located at 207 N Laurel Street.

Do relocated students still have access to laundry?

Relocated students can find specific information about their new housing assignment’s laundry options in their VCU email containing their housing assignment information. Additionally, all relocated students still have access to utilize the common laundry units inside of Brandt, GRC, Honors, and Rhoads. 


MOVE-IN & MOVE-OUT

Can I have guests to help with move-out?

Yes, you may have three guests assist you with move-out and relocating to your new assignment.

What do I do with the microfridge that I rented for my Johnson Hall room?

Ensure you remove your items from the fridge and we will work with the vendor to prorate the contracts and pick them up.

When can students move out of Johnson Hall?

Johnson Hall students should log in to the Housing Portal to select a move-out Time slot. Click the “Appointments” tab in the menu bar at the top of the page. Please plan to arrive at the start of the time slot that you selected. While the time slot is designated to occur over a two-hour period, we recognize that additional time may be needed to complete your move. You will be permitted up to three guests to assist with your move. Residents and guests are required to wear a face mask while indoors. Residents are not permitted to stay overnight in their Johnson Hall room. In addition, residents and their guests must vacate Johnson Hall by the close of the last move-out time slot. 

Is Residential Life and Housing providing moving carts and moving assistance?

Residential Life and Housing is providing a limited number of carts to assist with moving. We recommend that you bring your own move out cart if possible to expedite the move out process. A cart can be checked out from the community room of Brandt Hall , 710 W. Franklin Street (located diagonally from Johnson Hall across from Monroe Park). Additionally, volunteers will be available to assist with moving items between the hours 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday (Nov. 29 - Dec. 3). Once all items have been removed from your space, please return your key to the community room of Brandt Hall. All residents must check out of Johnson Hall and return their key by 4 p.m. Friday, December 3, 2021.

When can students move into their new housing assignment?

Students are currently able to move into their new assignment. Room key pick-up locations have been provided in the student’s housing reassignment email. Additional staff are located on-site to assist with questions between the hours 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday (Nov. 29 - Dec. 3).


DELTA HOTELS BY MARRIOTT RICHMOND DOWNTOWN ASSIGNMENTS

Is transportation provided for students assigned to temporary off-campus housing in Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown?

A shuttle is being provided for students from November 29 to December 22, 2021. This shuttle (which will be a VCU branded bus or a black bus with RMA on the side of it) will run every day from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and will run from off 6th St. and Canal St. (where you will see a “VCU Temporary Housing Shuttle” sign) to the Monroe Park campus at Floyd Ave. and S. Cathedral Place, by Cabell Library. Click here to view a map of the shuttle route and pick-up/drop-off locations. 

What food options are available at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown?

Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown restaurant serves breakfast and dinner daily (dinner is not available on Sundays). The hotel dining hours are as follows:

Breakfast: 
Monday - Friday: 6:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 7 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

Dinner:
Monday - Thursday: 5:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Friday and Saturday: 5:30 p.m. - 11 p.m.
Closed Sunday Nights

VCU dining dollars and meal swipes cannot be used for dining at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown, but students may utilize their dining plan at the VCU dining locations on-campus.

Will the Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown provide linens and other amenities?

Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown amenities include a microwave, mini-refrigerator, coffee maker, iron and ironing board, safe, and complimentary wireless internet. Linens included are what is already provided on each bed, which include sheets, pillows and top blanket. There are four towels provided per room in a double/double room. Rooms are not serviced daily unless requested by the guest. Long term stay guests are serviced every 3-5 days. If the individuals would like additional towels, they can just call down to the desk and request them. If they want their room serviced sooner, they can request it with the front desk. 


ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS

What is the best way to contact Residential Life and Housing if I have questions?

Please email vcuhousing@vcu.edu with additional questions.

 

View the Johnson Hall Information Session archived from Wednesday, November 24 at 2 p.m.

 

 

 

 

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