AUSTIN, Texas—The University of Texas at Austin announced today (July 7) that The University of Texas System Board of Regents has authorized the UT System Real Estate Office to negotiate a ground lease of 46 acres adjacent to the J.J. Pickle Research Campus to the Simon Property Group.
“The university has been looking for alternate sources of funding to meet its needs,” said Kevin Hegarty, chief financial officer for The University of Texas at Austin. “This is an opportunity to develop the site to its highest and best use until it is needed for university purposes in the future.”
Simon Property Group, the nation’s largest developer and manager of retail real estate, plans a premium, open-air, mixed-use project for the site. Totaling 550,000 square feet, the project will include 200,000 square feet of anchor stores, 300,000 square feet of in-line specialty ships, boutiques and restaurants and six freestanding waterfront restaurants.
An exclusive residential component of about 200 units also is being planned. Once all appropriate approvals have been obtained, including zoning and development, construction is scheduled to begin in early 2005 and be completed in fall 2006.
The property to be leased is on the east frontage road of Mopac Boulevard (Loop 1) between U.S. 183 and Braker Lane. Simon Property Group was selected from a field of six proposals to develop the site under a 50-year ground lease.
“We believe this project is functionally and aesthetically compatible with existing and future university land uses in the area,” said Pat Clubb, vice president for Employee and Campus Services. “We expect this lease will be mutually beneficial to the university and the Austin community.”
The Board of Regents must approve a final lease before it becomes effective.