Purchase College will use $36.4 million in tax-free bonds from the Westchester Local Development Corp. to build a 300-unit dormitory building, the county announced Monday.
The four-story, 80,000-square-foot residence hall will rise on an open 4-acre parcel of land near the SUNY college’s other residential halls. Building plans include a suite-style configuration with student common areas and separate accommodations for resident advisers. Purchase College said the facility will be designed to meet LEED Silver or better environmental standards
The LDC approved the bond funding at its Oct. 19 meeting. The tax-free bonds will be used for construction, which the county said in the announcement provides thousands in savings to the college from lower interest costs and carries no cost or obligation for the county. The LDC provides tax-exempt bond financing for nonprofit organizations.
The college said the new dorm building is necessary to meet growing demand at the school. Purchase College spokesperson Betsy Aldredge said in a statement that the school has shifted from a primarily commuter campus to having a majority of students reside on campus, creating a challenge to find enough housing for all residential students. Purchase College has approximately 2,200 beds, which the school said are typically 98 percent full during the fall semester.
The new building will allow the school to “move students from triples to doubles, therefore improving their residence experience. At the same time, the new dorm will give us flexibility to convert spaces now used as living quarters into academic spaces, and to renovate some of our older housing stock,” Aldredge said.
The $36.4 million is expected to cover all project costs. Construction is expected to start in spring 2018, with occupancy in fall 2019.