UCF-area apartments re-brand to outlive reputations
Pegasus Landing, Pegasus Pointe and Jefferson Village — students new to UCF may have never heard of these apartment complexes, even though they might be living in them.
After building up bad reputations or falling victim to bouts of crime, some student apartments are known to re-brand with name changes and management changes. And although their reputations are up for debate, Sterling Central, Arbour Apartments and Orion on Orpington are up next for a facelift.
Recently, Sterling Central apartments has not been immune to the crime that has been known to pop up in student housing. After two armed robberies, followed by the arrest of the resident responsible, Sterling is being re-branded under the same company that has transformed student apartments in the past.
Popular Alafaya Trail complexes, such as Knights Circle, The Pointe at Central, Orion on Orpington and now Sterling Central apartments, have all undergone name changes brought on by new management. Knights Circle, formerly known as Pegasus Landing, was re-named in late 2010, and The Pointe at Central transformed from Pegasus Pointe in 2011, according to the respective complexes. Both are now being managed by Asset Campus Housing, the same company that will now be managing and re-branding Sterling Central to The Marquee, according to a document released to residents at Sterling.
Some Sterling residents are excited about the re-branding and hope the new management will bring peace of mind with more security. Residents Avery Elliot and Shannon Sestile seem confident and hopeful about their safety and the future of The Marquee.
"They have two security guards full time rather than just at night, and you have to have a specific key now to open the doors," said Elliot, a freshman sports and exercise science major.
Sestile, a junior chemistry major, echoed that there is much more communication coming from the new management now than there was before.
The new management has made them feel safer already, with 24-hour security guards, working cameras in the elevators and access only for residents, the students said.
The Marquee's management declined to respond to any questions.
Similarly, Knights Circle and The Pointe at Central have experienced crime in the past before they were re-branded, but the question remains: Have their new reputations really helped them transform and keep their residents safe?
Kelsey Friend, a junior economics major, said she feels Knights Circle could do a better job of making its residents feel protected.
"Someone did get robbed in the building across from mine," she said. "I feel decently safe, but not at all at night. It's really sketchy to even walk to your building."
Friend also said that the complex claims to have security riding around on bikes every five minutes, but she rarely sees them.
According to UCF Police Department crime statistics provided by public information officer Courtney Gilmartin, there have been 391 incidents at Knights Circle since the beginning of 2011 to present, ranging from battery to burglary, showing that a re-branding doesn't always solve the problem.
T'Jean Tomlinson, a resident at The Pointe at Central, is singing a different tune. He feels the transformation has made the complex a much safer place for students to live.
"Security guards are on patrol at all times and UCF police periodically patrol the premises," said Tomlinson, a senior mechanical engineering student.
Even though Tomlinson feels safe at The Pointe at Central, UCF Police crime statistics provided by Gilmartin show that there have been 207 incidents that have occurred since 2011, which was around the time of re-branding, to the present. Though significantly fewer than the number of crimes that have occurred at Knights Circle, there is room for improvement with security.
Orion on Orpington, previously known as Jefferson Village, has recently been bought out by new management, The Preiss Company, according to an email sent out to residents.
Although the management will change, the name Orion will remain.
"We will be adding some great new features and additions to the community as well as improving current features to make your stay with us as enjoyable as possible," the email states.
Along with Orion, two other apartment complexes have changed names following this trend of re-branding, including Arbour Apartments which will now be known as The Place, along with The Quad, which was previously known as The Gatherings. The Quad, which got rid of its outsourced management around March, is now being managed by the owners, housing officials said.
The Place, known to many as Arbour Apartments has been under new management — US Residential Group — since July, according to the complex. New renovations have been made and housing officials said there has been great feedback from residents.