Archive for Friday, February 16, 1996

REGENTS GIVE THEIR OK TO KU, KUEA LAND SWAP

February 16, 1996

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— The Legislature must give final approval of the exchange of property.

Kansas University Endowment Association acquired approval Thursday for a land swap that would clear the way for construction of a new headquarters.

Without debate, the Kansas Board of Regents endorsed an arrangement that allows KUEA to receive an undeveloped 13.9-acre tract owned by KU and $695,000 in exchange for Youngberg Hall, KUEA's existing office building, and the 3.2 acres upon which it sits.

Final approval must come from the Legislature.

"We believe it is a fair deal, which fulfills the needs of both the university and the endowment association," said KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway.

Both parcels are on KU's West Campus in Lawrence.

The land sought by KUEA was deeded to KU in 1967 at no cost.

Dolph Simons Jr., chairman of KUEA's Board of Trustees, said the association required more office space to conduct another major fund drive.

"If a new building is to be built, it will be designed to carry the needs of the association well into the 21st century, during which time it is likely the endowment association will be asked to mount another major capital drive such as Campaign Kansas, the highly successful effort that raised $265 million for KU from 1988 to 1992," Simons said.

The association's staff has grown from 24 people in 1976 -- the year KUEA moved to Youngberg Hall -- to 95 people.

KUEA President Jim Martin said the association considered expanding Youngberg Hall. Consultants said an addition would be more expensive and less efficient than a new building.

Youngberg Hall and the surrounding land was valued by appraisers at $2.3 million. The undeveloped site at 19th and Iowa was valued at $1.6 million.

Over a five-year period, KU would use private funds to pay KUEA $695,000 to make up the difference.

Under the plan passed by regents, KUEA would take control of the proposed construction site July 1. Youngberg Hall would be irrevocably transferred to KU.

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