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Archive for Tuesday, February 18, 2014

KU drops legislative request for bonding authority to build fieldhouse apartments

February 18, 2014

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— Kansas University on Tuesday dropped its legislative request for bonding authority to build a $17.5 million apartment building for KU athletes.

Tim Caboni, vice chancellor for public affairs, said the decision to withdraw the bonding proposal was because of last week's "disappointing" decision by the House Education Budget Committee to reject it.

"I hope our legislators will now return to discussing the University of Kansas' top priority, which is addressing the doctor shortage facing all Kansans and the Health Education Initiative," Caboni said.

KU also is seeking help from the Legislature in constructing a $75 million health education building that KU officials have said is needed to maintain accreditation, modernize training and produce more physicians.

State Sen. Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence, and a member of the Senate budget-writing committee, agreed with KU's decision to abandon the request concerning the apartments.

"I know the Legislature is concerned about bonding authority overall," Francisco said.

The apartments are planned to be built near Allen Fieldhouse and would include 66 units; 32 would be for student-athletes and 34 for students who are not athletes.

The project would also include a commons area, kitchen, parking lot and half-court basketball court.

KU officials said the apartments would be used as a recruiting tool and to limit access between student-athletes and professional agents.

But some legislators balked at the cost even though the bonds would have been paid off with private donations and revenues from the apartment building itself.

Caboni said KU will explore other options to get the apartment project completed, but he didn't provide any details.

Comments

Lawrence Morgan 10 months ago

Great! Those apartments are not needed. Leave the space open. Don't fill it up with more apartments!

A lot of KU students and people who go on campus value this kind of open space. Apparently the administrators do not. But administrators come and go (and Caboni should go, in my opinion, to be replaced by a person much more in tune with nature), while once the space is filled with buildings, it stays that way for a long time.

Steve King 10 months ago

I'm thinking I read somewhere the state only provides about 25% of college funding. Why don't they tell them to go fly a kite and grab some of the sports money to run the schools. More than enough there. Coaches making $5-6 million a year and the boiler is broke? Not sensible.

Bob Zimmerman 10 months ago

But how will the "student athletes" get edumacated without condos to live in?

These poor kids...will someone please think of the children!...or their children.

Bob Forer 10 months ago

The current facilities are more than adequate. I doubt very few recruits make their decision on the quality of the dorms, as long as they are not subpar. Neither Bill Self nor Roy Williams have had difficulty luring blue chip recruits over the years. The program will survive and continue to thrive regardless olf whether this "dorm" is built.

This is one Brownbackian decision I agree with.

Mike George 10 months ago

Come on, people. This isn't a decision that still needs to be made. The dorm will be built - it just won't be financed by bonds backed by the State. KU is in a recruiting war with Kentucky, NC, Syracuse, Texas, and every other major major, and this type of nicer dorm facility is definitely considered by recruits as a perk of certain programs. In case you haven't figured this out, if you are misguidedly talking about whether "open space" needs to be utilized, or wondering aloud if the program can survive without it, fuggedabboutit!!! Sit on your porches and watch the Athletics administration get it built.

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