Topeka 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.