Barnhart Balfour Beatty Tapped to Build $104M UC Riverside Student Housing Complex

There haven't been too many hiccups in the student housing market during the recession.

August 25, 2010
By Barbra Murray, Contributing Editor

There haven’t been too many hiccups in the student housing market during the recession. Development news, like the University of California, Riverside’s selection of Barnhart Balfour Beatty to serve as construction manager at risk for the $104 million Glen Mor 2 project, just keeps on coming.

Encompassing 350,000 square feet, Glen Mor 2 will accommodate 814 students as part of UC Riverside’s goal of providing housing for 50 percent of its student body. The six-building apartment complex will also feature a food emporium, recreational facilities, a parking facility and a pedestrian bridge connecting the property to the Glen Mor 1 residential building, which opened its doors three years ago. Sasaki Associates is the architectural firm on the project, which is being designed to achieve LEED Gold certification.

Across the country, demand for student housing has been fairly steady throughout the economic downturn. Among the bevy of recent announcements are the groundbreaking for 8 1/2 Canal Street adjacent to Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia, and commencement of construction of West 27th Place, a mixed-use student housing development across from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Additionally, the University of Texas System Board of Regents recently chose Education Realty Trust Inc. to develop and own a new high-rise apartment property near the University of Texas at Austin.

There are no signs that new student housing construction activity will subside any time soon; developers in few sectors of the commercial real estate market can claim the same. “Student housing should increase in this economy as more individuals are pursuing education rather than trying to jump into the job market,” Eric Stenman, President of Barnhart Balfour Beatty, told CPE. “As a result, universities will make the investment to modernize and increase student housing capacity. Unfortunately, office and retail will continue to suffer from the impact of the economy.”

With a groundbreaking planned for June 2011, development of UCR’s Glen Mor 2 is scheduled to reach completion in July 2013.