News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local & Bistate

July 10, 2013

State Budget Committee postpones action on ISU downtown housing project

TERRE HAUTE — The State Budget Committee today decided to postpone a vote on Indiana State University’s request to enter a 30-year lease  for a downtown housing project, even though an ISU official indicated it could threaten the deal.

Committee chairman Sen. Luke Kenley said the committee doesn’t have enough information on the project to know if it’s a good deal. He said if it’s truly a good deal, then the private developer will wait on the committee’s approval.

According to information provided to the budget committee, the facility will be owned by a private developer, Thompson Thrift, and consist of retail space on the first floor with student housing on the upper three floors.

Annual lease payments for the facility are estimated at just over $1 million. In addition to the annual lease payments, ISU would be responsible for the operations and maintenance of the residential areas and would pay for costs associated with the preservation of existing historic facades of the building, estimated at $2 million.

Total expected cost over the 30-year lease term is $33.6 million.

The downtown housing project would accommodate 228 students in four-bedroom units with common living and dining areas.

Funding would be provided by the University’s Residence Hall System operating budget, which has a current balance of $34,787,513.

The Commission for Higher Education did approve the project at its June meeting.

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