July 30, 2010
LAFAYETTE — The University of Louisiana at Lafayette is moving forward with plans to create an additional 2,600 on- campus housing units, said Jerry Luke LeBlanc, ULL vice president of finance and administration.
The 2,600 units will be constructed in two phases and details of the plans are still in the works, LeBlanc said.
The university recently completed an additional three buildings to its existing Legacy Park, apartment-style complex, adding 162 beds.
Designs for the new construction project have not been finalized but will lean more toward traditionally styled dorms, LeBlanc said.
“Market study after market study shows to remain competitive, we have to replenish our traditional housing stock,” LeBlanc said.
LeBlanc said the university is working out details to contract with RISE on the housing project that will include the two construction phases.
The first phase includes new traditional housing at the site where Denbo and Bancroft dormitories sit. The two buildings have been shuttered for the past few years because of overwhelming maintenance needs and will be demolished.
The new dorms will be traditional with modern tweaks — like private bathrooms and updated technology, he said.
The second phase targets the campus’ older dormitories in an area known as the Rose Garden. The area includes older “historically significant” buildings, and assessments will be made on whether to renovate or build there, LeBlanc said.
Both projects will be designed to create a neighborhood atmosphere on the campus, with the university’s Student Union, set for major renovations, as the anchor, LeBlanc said.
RISE, a Georgia-based development and management company, specializes in university development and has completed on-campus housing projects at Southern University in both Baton Rouge and Shreveport, McNeese State University and Grambling State University, according to its website.
The company also manages The Edge, an off-campus housing complex that provides shuttle service to the campus.
The project will be financed the same way Legacy Park was constructed, through a third-party, nonprofit corporation, Ragin’ Cajun Facilities, and the construction bonds will be paid off from the rental fees, LeBlanc said.
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