Message from Sister Linda Bevilacqua, OP, PhD, Barry University President:
I write to share the news that this week the Barry University Villa will be demolished. Built as a motel, it was purchased by Barry College in the 1950s to house sophomore students. I enjoyed living in Villa 19 during my sophomore year. Like me, many students have happy memories of life at the Villa.
Over the years, it was a residence hall for undergraduate women, the Honors House, the first residence for men when we went co-ed at the undergraduate level in 1975 and a residence for active and retired Adrian Dominican sisters, student sisters from other communities, and graduate students.
Miami Dade County adheres to the Florida Building Code that requires buildings be recertified for structural and electric safety after forty years (and every ten years thereafter). Knowing our obligation, we began our assessment and came to the conclusion that the Villa would not pass the Forty Year Recertification. External consultants confirmed our suspicion that bringing the Villa to code would be cost prohibitive. We have been acquiring properties on the same side of NE Second Avenue as the Villa and, given our expanded “footprint,” we are envisioning new facilities to meet strategic University needs.
Last month I walked through the vacated rooms at the Villa and thanked God for everyone who blessed that space with life, laughter and prayer. I know it’s a building, but I said “good-bye” for lots of us.