Student housing Developer to be announced next week

Tyler McNeil
Managing Editor

The future developer of student housing may be determined next Tuesday.

At next week’s Board of Trustees meeting, the college could contract Hudson Valley Stargreen or the United Group to lead student housing, expected to open by fall 2017.

The bid was originally scheduled to be awarded last month on Dec. 15, but was delayed. According to Dennis Kennedy, director of communications and marketing, the push back will not impact the project’s expected completion date next year. “We don’t believe this would delay our timeline,” he said.

According to their request-for-proposal, the United Group submitted a $268,000 bid to acquire the property. The offer is $42,000 higher than Hudson Valley Stargreen’s bid for the 40-acre site.

Both bidders have competed for the property since November. The bid opened on Nov. 23, several weeks after SUNY approved the sale of the Hy Rosenblum Administration property, appraised at $840,000. Demolition for the building is expected to cost $1 million.

Hudson Valley Stargreen, managed by David Mulinio, aims to continue Omni Development’s plan last year to create student housing called The Ironworks. The company plans to secure a $20 million loan to finance the project.

While Mulinio hopes to use Omni Development’s plans, the United Group, owned by Michael Uccellini, aims to use a new design concept for the project if awarded the bid next week. Under the United Group, the facility, built by LeChase Construction, would be known as College Suites at Hudson Valley.

Design renderings for College Suites at Hudson Valley in the company’s request-for-proposal response were provided in partnership with Architecture Plus. The Troy-based architecture firm maintains long-standing ties with the college. For over a decade, Architecture Plus has designed and redesigned five buildings across campus.

The United Group has developed student housing across the state including suites near Hudson Valley. Three miles away from the college, the company operates the nearly $19 million College Station next to RPI. Along with Troy, The United Group has also developed student housing in Schenectady ($15 million) and Albany ($70 million).

Founded nearly two years ago, Hudson Valley Stargreen has never developed student housing, but the company’s influence currently neighbors the college. Hudson Valley Stargreen is currently in the process of constructing 33,000 square feet of retail space and 48 townhouse units at the Route 4 corridor.

After the bid is awarded, it must be approved by the Rensselaer County legislature in order for the project to move forward. The county last came in contact with the college’s plans to move forward with student housing about four months ago when they approved the Board of Trustees’ decision to sell the Hy Rosenblum Administrative Building property.

The building, a former Roman Catholic seminary, has been vacant since 2007 when administrative offices were moved to the Administrative Building. The college previously owned the property since the 1980s.

mbt-3671 (2)Marison Topinio | The Hudsonian

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