Federal housing analysis says Champaign rental market oversaturated, but city continues to approve development

The development of student apartments in Champaign-Urbana has not slowed down over the past five years, despite two separate federal housing analyses describing the rental market as oversaturated.

“During December 2016, the estimated student-targeted apartment vacancy rate was 12.9 percent, up from 7.4 percent a year earlier” a federal 2017 Comprehensive Housing Market Analysis reported in January.

But Ben LeRoy, an associate planner for the Champaign planning and development department, said that the city’s policy on student apartments is influenced more by the developers on campus and less by sources such as the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, which produced the January 2017 report.