Boca Raton, Fla. — Balfour Beatty Capital Group has entered into a public-private partnership with Florida Atlantic University to develop and manage on-campus student housing at the Boca Raton school’s main campus.
The first phase of the partnership will include the development of a new $123 million residential facility for upperclassmen and graduate students. The project, which will be constructed in the school’s new Innovation Village area, will be built by Balfour Beatty Construction. It will consist of a seven-story building and an eight-story building that will house a total of 1,216 beds. Residences will consist of a mix of two-, three- and four-bedroom units as well as some one-bedroom units for resident assistants.
Amenities at the new housing community will include a courtyard area between the two buildings with green spaces, an outdoor pool and a sand volleyball court. Other amenities include a fitness center, a convenience store, a computer lab and multipurpose meeting areas. The project will be applying for LEED-Silver certification. It is being designed by Pierce Goodwin Alexander & Linville and will be completed in time for the start of the fall 2011 semester.
The project is being developed and will be managed upon completion by a joint venture between Balfour Beatty Campus Solutions, which just launched this month, and Capstone On-Campus Management, an affiliate of Capstone Development Corp. The project is being financed through tax-exempt bonds and Build America Bonds issued by The FAU Finance Corporation. Balfour Beatty Capital Group is personally investing in the project by purchasing $3.4 million in tax-exempt bonds.
Prior to the completion of the project, the joint venture will also assume management responsibilities for the rest of the university’s on-campus residential facilities, which total 2,446 beds.
Balfour Beatty did not return a request for comment in time for press, but Bruce Robinson, president and CEO of Balfour Beatty Capital Group, said in a statement, “This is a great opportunity to build upon the existing traditions of Florida Atlantic University by expanding the on-campus housing options for today’s students utilizing the public-private partnership model. Balfour Beatty’s service companies have a strong collective track record when it comes to student housing development, construction and management that will allow us to help colleges and universities meet their infrastructure demands for current and future students. We are also delighted to be partnering with Capstone for this exciting project. They bring a very impressive resumé to this effort, and we look forward to a successful partnership.”
Balfour Beatty Campus Solutions is the most recent addition to Balfour Beatty Capital Group’s real estate services affiliates. The subsidiary’s goal is to provide development, management and other real estate services to colleges and universities, with a special emphasis on public-private partnerships. The recession has depleted endowments at schools across the country, and Balfour Beatty is positioning the public-private partnership model as a way to provide schools with the resources to complete necessary development projects.
— Coleman Wood