The University of Kentucky Board of Trustees on Tuesday approved the continuation of Phase II of a plan to expand and modernize student housing, authorizing the president to develop three additional residence halls with 1,610 undergraduate beds at the Cooperstown site by August 2015.
These additions to campus, to be developed and managed by Education Realty Trust, Inc. (EdR), will bring the total number of modern student accommodations to 4,592.
The transformation of UK’s undergraduate student housing began in February 2012 with the construction on Haggin Field of Central Hall I and II, which will house 601 students beginning this upcoming fall semester.
Phase II-A includes the current construction of five new residence halls, Champions Court I and II on the north end of campus, Woodland Glen I and II behind William T. Young Library, and Haggin Hall.
Plans were later amended for Haggin Hall to include approximately 12,000 square feet of shell space for a dining venue plus 64 additional beds.
In total, the five halls of Phase II-A will add 2,381 beds to the university’s portfolio by August 2014. Development cost of Phase II-A is estimated at $138 million.
With a scope of $101.2 million, Tuesday's board action will allow Phase II-B to commence with three new halls, Woodland Glen III, IV and V, adding another 1,610 beds and completing the transformation of the Cooperstown site by August 2015.
Recognizing that the average age of UK’s current student housing is 45 years, UK President Eli Capilouto said, “This public private partnership has allowed the university to fulfill our promise of modern student housing in an astoundingly brief time frame while also reserving our debt capacity for other projects to modernize our classrooms.
“Not only will the student experience at the University of Kentucky be transformed, but the impact on our state and local economies is not to be underestimated. The university’s growth is not happening at the expense of Kentucky, but at its enrichment.”
The economic impact of this widespread construction will total approximately $163.8 million, with Phase I, Phase II-A and Phase II-B supporting 7,384 direct and indirect jobs.
About 75 percent of the developments’ employees will be Kentuckians, and the entire 4,592-bed housing plan will generate about $7.5 million in tax revenues.