Texas Woman’s University entered into an agreement with Scott Brown Properties to lease three more apartment complexes.
TWU is leasing Withers Place Apartments at 517 Withers St., La Maureta Apartments at 417 Withers St. and the Vineyard Apartments at 902 Vine St.
The lease will begin in August.
“If there happens to be a student in one of those … we don’t intend to make them leave,” said Richard Nicholas, vice president for student life. TWU will become the student’s landlord, he said.
TWU determined that it would need 100 addition beds for the fall. The recent leases will add 74 beds.
“We are talking with other property owners,” Nicholas said.
TWU has looked at a number of apartments, he said.
“We wanted the entire facility,” Nicholas said. “These three, the owners agreed to that condition and they met the rest of our conditions.”
The other conditions include being within walking distance to campus, parking at the apartment complex and the condition of the property must meet university standards.
TWU began looking for housing off campus in 2011 when it leased its first three apartments from Scott Brown Properties.
The other apartments are Bent Tree Apartments at 1000 N. Bell Ave., Lone Star Apartments at 600 Texas St. and Austin Place Apartments at 1005 N. Austin St.
All of the leased apartments are being referred to as TWU Select Apartments.
The apartments have been TWU’s answer to its increased need for on-campus housing.
In fall 2012, TWU also leased up to 100 rooms from Quality Inn and Suites, located on Dallas Drive. The university didn’t need the rooms for the spring semester.
TWU requires freshmen and sophomores to live on campus.
Freshmen applications are 12 percent ahead of last year. And there is a 9.3 percent increase of current residents who want to stay in university housing, Nicholas said.
Students will begin signing up for housing for the fall semester mid-March.
At a meeting for students in November, TWU officials showed a draft plan with possible locations for proposed residence halls.
“Building would be more long term,” Nicholas said, adding that TWU has to meet student needs now.
But TWU isn’t ready to build yet, he said.
It will take about two years to build new housing on campus.
The TWU Board of Regents were scheduled to vote on soliciting proposals for the design of a new residence hall in November but that item as well as other building-related items were removed from the agenda.
Nicholas said TWU officials weren’t ready to talk with the regents about building.
TWU is working on a preliminary study and a lengthy housing option plan, he said.
“There is not a set plan to actually do it,” Nicholas said.
On Friday, the regents voted to approve an expenditure of up to $188,540 from auxiliary funds to purchase furniture for the overflow housing, which Nicholas told regents is a need.
The regents also approved increased housing rates, which make the rates for the Select Apartments $3,625 for a two-bedroom apartment, $4,750 for a one-bedroom apartment and $2,625 for a shared one-bedroom apartment. This rate goes into effect in the fall.
RACHEL MEHLHAFF can be reached at 940-566-6889. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org .