Pacific University’s new Cascade Hall

Emily Sproul had her heart set on Pacific University long before she set foot on campus.

After moving in Thursday, the freshman said the campus — especially her dorm room in brand-new Cascade Hall — didn’t disappoint.

“I showed up and it just blew me away how beautiful it is,” Sproul said. “All of the dorms were nice, but this is just amazing.”

The new 61,500 square-foot residence hall sleeps about 80 freshmen and 120 sophomores and is seeking LEED Gold certification as a green building.

Sproul said she liked the building’s unique design — which features exposed wood and wide-open community lounge areas — and the mural of a waterfall that follows students down the four-story staircase.

“It’s brand-new, but it feels homey,” she said.

New student orientation continues through Sunday. Classes start Monday.

Pacific’s campus can house about 1,500 undergraduate and 500 graduate students.

University Director of Media Relations Joe Lang said the university is expecting more than 450 freshmen and about 100 new transfer students this fall.

More so than older, apartment-style dorms, Lang said Cascade Hall is designed to bring a community living feel to younger students.

“The first year of college is a pretty exciting time, but it can also be a little bit nervous for some folks,” Lang said. “We don’t want to limit them by the confines of their on-campus home. We want them to feel like this is a central social area.”

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