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Blinn board authorizes Brenham campus student housing project

Facility would house 453 students and be paid for through public-private partnership

February 16, 2016

The Blinn College Board of Trustees approved a resolution Tuesday authorizing a privatized student housing facility that will add 453 beds to the College’s Brenham campus.

In November, the board authorized Blinn administrators to enter into negotiations with Servitas, LLC, regarding the development of new student housing. The facility will house 453 students and be located on Blinn property at the corner of Saeger Street and Old Mill Creek Road. It would be ready for student use by Fall 2017.

The project will be funded by National Campus and Community Development-Blinn College Properties, LLC, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization established to provide tax-exempt financing specifically for this project. The College and NCCD-Blinn College Properties will enter into a 40-year ground lease, and upon loan repayment by NCCD, the facility will revert to Blinn.

The project will not impact Blinn’s ability to proceed with its new Bryan West campus, which is also expected to open in Fall 2017.

The Blinn-Brenham campus currently houses 1,326 students, more than any other community college in the state. Despite this, more than 400 students were placed on the housing waiting list this fall. The addition of approximately 400 students would generate approximately $2.5 million in annual tuition, fees and state reimbursement.

In other business, the board awarded a guaranteed maximum price of $38.8 million to Vaughn Construction for Phase 1 development of its new Bryan campus. The campus, located at 851 N. Harvey Mitchell Parkway, is scheduled to begin construction in March and be completed in time for the Fall 2017 semester.

Developed in partnership with Kirksey Architecture, the campus ultimately will serve as many as 15,000 students.

Phase 1 of the project is designed to serve approximately 2,500 students, and includes an academic building, a student resource building and approximately 800 parking spaces. The four-story academic building would include 18 classrooms and eight laboratories, while the student resource center would include a library, study and leisure space, campus police and other student services.

Construction costs will be funded by bond sales.

Blinn trustees authorized the College to negotiate a construction manager at risk contract with Vaughn Construction for the project in November.