Vacant houses being torn down to make way for U of L student hou - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Vacant houses being torn down to make way for U of L student housing

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Demolition is underway on Crittenden Drive just south of Eastern Parkway to make way for what will be a new housing complex for students at the University of Louisville.

Illinois developer Royal/Buck is behind the project.

Right now old houses and apartment buildings are boarded up, waiting for the wrecking ball on five acres of land, just east of U of L's Belknap campus and Interstate 65.

Private developers are clearing the land to build what will be a 271-unit apartment complex.

Right now the university has no formal involvement with the developers.

"We have had discussions with the company that is looking to develop those properties," U of L spokesman Mark Hebert tells WDRB News, "and eventually we hope that once they get it built they will come to us and seek an affiliation agreement with us, we have had similar properties around campus."

Several other private housing developments have already been built on the edge of the U of L campus, including Cardinal Towne, on South Third Street on what used to be the old Masterson's restaurant property.

"What housing we have on campus right now is plenty to handle the number of students," says Hebert, "but as more students want to live on campus we are going to need more student housing."

With tight budgets, many universities are getting out of the housing business and letting private developers do the heavy lifting.

"You know these companies have a lot of capital to invest," Hebert says. "We don't have that, so it is easier for them to find the money to build this student housing."

Some of U of L's older dormitories have recently had mold problems and will eventually need to be replaced.

It will likely continue to be the private sector that steps up and solve the university's housing needs as the area around the U of L campus continues to be redeveloped.

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