San Antonio Inner City Reinvestment District Approves Funding for ChildSafe Campus, Student Housing Projects
Texas Construction News from Virtual Builders Exchange
by Adolfo Pesquera
San Antonio (Bexar County) – The Inner City Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone 11 approved $2.3 million to be used as gap funding for two East Side projects that together are valued at $67.5 million.
The board of directors for TIRZ 11 on Friday passed a resolution in favor of $1.5 million from the district’s revolving fund for the ChildSafe Salado Creek Campus. The child abuse/neglect crisis response organization has outgrown its 13,000-square-foot West Side facility and has been planning a move for sometime. The new campus has an estimated project cost of almost $29 million.
In addition, the board approved an $800,000 loan to Fortress Funding Investments LLC for the construction of a four-story building with a project value of $38.5 million. The project value includes a $2 million land donation by Alamo Colleges from a site on the St. Philips College campus. This is to be a market rate student housing project that will have 375 beds.
Courtyard concept for the ChildSafe Salado Creek Campus. Courtesy of ChildSafe and Overland Partners.
On May 25, ChildSafe purchased a 32.4-acre tract of vacant land that extends from the 4000 block of East Houston Street on the north to Salado Creek, and has Interstate 10 as its western and Wheatley Heights Sports Complex as its eastern boundaries. Most of the land, almost 28 acres, is in a flood plain.
Al Gordon, economic development coordinator for the city’s Neighborhood and Housing Services Department, told the board that ChildSafe will be donating 21 acres from that portion to the city to create a protected public green space. Within this land, the Parks and Recreation Department is expected to create a park.
The campus will be located to the north and away from the floodplain. The development team includes Overland Partners as architect and Pape-Dawson Engineers Inc. The loan recipient for ChildSafe is the Salado Creek Holding Corporation.
The new facility will be a two-story building with 65,000 square feet of space. The facility is being designed to accommodate from 17 to 21 law enforcement officers, 30 Child Protective Service stationary workers and supervisors, and 66 mobile CPS workers, two Bexar County assistant district attorneys, 14 Bexar County Juvenile Probation staff, and up to 102 ChildSafe employees.
Building site plan for the ChildSafe Salado Creek Campus. Courtesy of ChildSafe and Overland Partners.
In addition, ChildSafe anticipates the intermittent hosting of on-site community wellness clinics in concert with the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio.
The TIRZ loans will go toward meeting public infrastructure requirements.
ChildSafe CEO Kim Abernethy said the site plan allows room for an expansion of up to 5,000 square feet. The campus will have a loop road with access from Houston Street. Abernethy added that she anticipates construction will begin November 1.
Robey Architecture concept for the St. Philips College student housing project at MLK Drive and Mittman Street.
Student Housing for St. Philips
The project site for the student housing project is 1800 Martin Luther King Drive and between Meerscheidt and Mittman streets, Gordon said. The site is currently a surface parking lot.
The new building will have a total area of 233,200 square feet. The design shows a structure with no setback. Resident access if from an existing parking lot to a central courtyard with pool and covered patios. The average unit size is 929 square feet, and the average per-bed area is 461 square feet.
Construction is proposed to begin by September 2018 and reach completion by December 2019.
The development team includes Ken Lowe, general partner with Fortress Funding Investment LLC; Floyd Wilson Jr. with Frost Bank; Matt Wideman with ARA Investments; and John Strybos, an engineer and associate vice chancellor at Alamo Colleges.
The architect is Thom Robey of Robey Architecture Inc. Technical consultants include Terracon Consultants Inc.; Intelligent Engineering Services LLP (structural engineer); CNG Engineering (MEP); and Bain Medina Bain Inc. (civil, structural, transportation and surveying).
Adolfo Pesquera (Reporter/Editor) is a veteran news journalist. He has worked for Hearst Corp., American Lawyer Media, News Corp and Freedom Communications. His work has been published in newspapers and magazines across the USA. He is a journalism graduate of UT-RGV. He writes, edits and creates digital pages for VBX.