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Bexar County Commissioners Court approves land transfer to support UTSA Downtown Campus vision

(Oct. 23, 2018) – The Bexar County Commissioners Court today unanimously approved a resolution to support UTSA’s Downtown Campus expansion initiative, including the transfer of a parcel of land to house a future building for the UTSA College of Business. The agreement advances collaboration between UTSA, the City of San Antonio and Bexar County and positions the university as an integral partner in the development of San Antonio’s urban core.

The land transfer consists of 2.6 acres of property on Dolorosa St. between S. Santa Rosa Ave. and South Flores St. for construction of a new building to house the UTSA College of Business, which is currently located on the Main Campus. The county property conjoins two parcels of land that the San Antonio City Council unanimously voted to transfer to UTSA last week. They will be the sites for the National Security Collaboration Center (NSCC) and the proposed School of Data Science (SDS).          

“We are immensely grateful to Judge Wolff, Commissioner Elizondo and all the Bexar County Commissioners for supporting the expansion of UTSA’s Downtown Campus,” said UTSA President Taylor Eighmy. “The entire endeavor is a model for how government, education and industry can all work together to maximize economic opportunity and drive our mutual goals forward.”

Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff credits Eighmy for turning around the future of the Downtown Campus.

“This development is going to make a dramatic difference on the synergy that will occur in central city,” said Wolff. “Most importantly, it’s going to be a beacon to a lot of students that may live in the inner city, east, west, south, who will see this great opportunity that attending college is attainable.”

County Commissioner Tommy Calvert called the partnership a valuable opportunity for various levels of government to work together on projects such as affordable student housing.

“It’s exciting to bring students downtown, to contribute to the vitality of the urban core,” said Calvert.

UTSA College of Business Dean Wm. Gerry Sanders and Jerry Geyer, chair of the San Pedro Creek Citizens Advisory Committee, demonstrated their support for the land transfer before the Court.

“It’s wonderful to have an education organization back into our historic community,” said Geyer. “UTSA will be a wonderful addition to the progress taking place along San Pedro Creek.”

In addition to the land, last month, UTSA received a $70 million commitment from the UT System Board of Regents for construction of the NSCC and SDS and a $15 million gift from San Antonio business leader Graham Weston to support the SDS.

Site planning and design for the proposed School of Data Science and National Security Collaboration Center will begin immediately, with construction expected to start next fall. The project should be completed in time for the Fall 2021 academic year. Construction of the new College of Business will begin in 2020.

Additionally, UTSA and the City are actively exploring the joint development and management of the former Continental Hotel on West Commerce St. as housing for faculty and other urban professionals. The project will involve the renovation of the existing hotel and construction of a new building on the hotel’s former parking lot.

UTSA is also making plans for a new mixed-use residential facility called Cattleman’s Square Residential Tower that will stand on the northeast corner of the Downtown Campus’ current footprint.

Collectively, these projects and partnerships will help UTSA fulfill its phased,10-year approach to accelerating the development of its Downtown Campus as a destination for producing highly skilled professionals in big data and analytics, advancing economic development in the urban core and creating prosperity for San Antonio. 

Courtney Clevenger

Learn more about the UTSA Downtown Campus 10-Year Plan.

Learn more about the land transfer between the City of San Antonio and UTSA.

Discover the UTSA Downtown Campus.

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