Sawyer student apartments open in Missoula’s Old Sawmill District for 2019-2020

The Sawyer student housing project will open in Missoula’s Old Sawmill District for the 2019-2020 school year.

The Sawyer student apartment building in Missoula’s Old Sawmill District is accepting lease applications for the 2019-2020 school year as two years of construction wrap up.

The apartments are due for completion by June.

The 126,000-square-foot building has four floors, and is located on Wyoming Street alongside the Polley Square condominiums and Cambium Place.

Students can choose from nine different floor plans, including two to four bedrooms per unit, many looking out toward Mount Sentinel.

Each bedroom has its own bathroom, and each unit has a kitchen, living area, and a washer and dryer. The building also provides security access and underground parking.

Sawyer has 218 beds in all, and each floor will have a community space, along with study rooms, a cafe and exercise areas.

Average rent for bedroom suites is $630, including a flat $50 utility fee.

“This is kind of [students’] first experience looking for apartments and housing in the Missoula community, and I think they’re looking for that nice balance that gets them out there but feels safe and still has a lot of conveniences that they’re used to,” project manager Catie Peissig said.

Once a booming industrial sawmill complex, the Old Sawmill District began development 16 years ago. “Sawyer” was chosen as the name of the student housing to incorporate more of the area’s history.

Other projects in the planning and construction phases include a senior living building, a tech campus, a restaurant and multiple parks. Residents will also receive perks, such as a discounted gym membership to Brio Fitness, located in the district.

“There’s a theme out here of industrial, family-owned, closely held, hardworking, blue collar people, and Missoula had a number of these kind of mills going back through time. It really became of the heart of Missoula and it employed most of the people,” Old Sawmill District developer Ed Wetherbee said.

Developer Ed Wetherbee said the Sawyer apartments will offer students many of the amenities they were accustomed to at home.

The ROAM Student Living development in downtown Missoula had to delay some student move-in dates last year due to construction. However, Wetherbee said he is pushing to get the project finished for walk-through inspections by May.

“Sometimes it gets a little adversarial, but we know it has to get done in time. We’ve had some great subcontractors, we’ve had some great suppliers who have done many creative things to make sure that we get it done in time,” Wetherbee said.

Student housing developments have spread throughout the United States, and Wetherbee said that it was time for Missoula to offer a locally owned and operated housing option.

“We’ve seen a product like this accepted broadly at many other campuses around the country. In fact, MSU beat us to it and theirs are very successful. We’re now able to provide that kind of a product here in Missoula,” Wetherbee said.

Students can apply online or visit the leasing office located in the district as well to receive a tour and more information on amenities, floor plans and rates.

Old Sawmill District developers showcase upscale ‘rent-by-choice’ apartment project