Many apartments that house students will open up housing possibilities to eclipse visitors.

On August 21, the solar eclipse will peak over Rexburg for the longest amount of time out of everywhere in the world. Due to its expanded time frame of two minutes and 19 seconds, many people will be visiting Rexburg to view the event.

It is unsure exactly how many people will be visiting Rexburg for the eclipse. KSL.com reported that Dan Harelson, engineering manager for the Idaho Transportation Department, predicted the possibility of half a million visitors.

With so many people visiting Rexburg, people are scrambling for different places to stay. Hotels such as Quality Inn, Super 8, and SpringHill Suites are completely booked. With the lack of available space for eclipse visitors to stay, BYU-Idaho is allowing student housing to rent out spaces.

BYU-I released a statement that included the guidelines the potential apartment complexes must follow. The housing units cannot have students in them, visitors can only stay for a week, students cannot be moved just to accommodate visitors and the Honor Code and apartment living standards must be upheld.

With these strict rules, many student housing complexes had to decide whether or not to allow eclipse visitors. Over 30 complexes were contacted, and about two-thirds said they would not be housing eclipse visitors, and the rest are either allowing eclipse visitors or still trying to decide.

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Ela Palea, a Nauvoo House manager, said that Nauvoo House Apartments will be offering to house eclipse guests. She said that no one has responded to the offer, but if they do, then they will have a place to stay at Nauvoo.

“(Eclipse visitors and students) can’t stay in the same building,” Palem said. We have a guys’ building and a girls’ building. The only way we are able to do this is because we have a third building and that’s where the eclipse people will stay.”

Wendy Provost, a Birch Plaza manager, said they will be housing both eclipse visitors and students since they have enough apartments to house both groups. Provost said that they will be enforcing the Honor Code for both parties.

“In our office, we talked about how we are strict housing and affiliated with the school, that school guidelines need to be kept and followed,” Provost said. “For example, we are going to make sure in our welcome packets (eclipse visitors) are aware there is no alcohol, no smoking and no drugs. We are going to do our best to implement the Honor Code where we can.”

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Tyler Johnson, a freshman studying biology, lives at one of the complexes that will be housing eclipse visitors.

“My only concern is that these total strangers will be living next to us for a week,” Johnson said.

Emma Greene, a freshman studying communication, will also be staying in Rexburg for the seven-week break when the eclipse will take place. The apartment she is staying in will be renting out all their buildings to eclipse visitors and relocating the girls elsewhere.

“Even though they are moving us out of our apartment, I am still excited to see all the eclipse people,” Greene said. “It gives people the opportunity to grasp what BYU-I is like, and since we are so close to Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons, visitors might be able to do a little sightseeing while here.”