USG announces newest Campus-Housing partner


The University System of Georgia (USG) selected and announced Corvias Campus Living, a development and construction property management firm, to be its newest campus-housing partner on Nov. 12, according to a USG release.

The University System’s Public-Private partnership plans to maintain affordable on-campus student housing, according to the USG’s website.

Hank Huckaby, the University System’s 12th chancellor, said in the release quality that safe and affordable housing is a top priority.

“We expect our initiative will generate innovation, operating efficiencies and best practices in student housing to improve the quality of the on-campus housing experience for our students,” he said.

Seven months ago a competitive bid process began between various development companies.

University System reached a new agreement with Corvias for $517 million to develop 3,683 new beds and manage 6,195 existing on-campus beds at nine institutions for the next 65 years, according to the release.

Below are the participating campuses listed in the release.

  1. Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College
  2. Armstrong State University
  3. College of Coastal Georgia
  4. Columbus State University
  5. Dalton State College
  6. East Georgia State College
  7. Georgia Regents University
  8. Georgia State University
  9. University of North Georgia

Renovations for Georgia State

Geoff Eisenacher, Vice President of Partnership Development for Corvias Campus Living, said Corvias is focused on offering affordability and addressing long-term and short-term maintenance needs through the partnership.

“First and foremost [we are] ensuring that the existing and the new facilities are in really good condition for the life of the 65-year partnership and then introducing a series of design innovations and efficiencies that we and the private sector can just deliver very well,” he said.

He also said phase one of the plan involves transferring existing dorms University Commons and Patton Hall at Georgia State into the partnership in addition to creating over 1,000 beds for the university as a whole.

“This phase one with the Board of Regents was established before this process started and so each campus identified which of the particular housing facilities were included in phase one,” Eisenacher said.

Eisenacher also said phase one also calls for capital repair and reinvestment for the existing housing locations on the nine campuses involved in the new housing partnership.

Corvias’ plan structure allows for reinvestment to be put into housing at various periods throughout the partnership term.

“With Patton Hall and the University Commons, there are specific projects that are to be done in the first year at each facility that are outlined,” he said. “And we will look forward to working with the campuses over the next few months to make sure that we execute on that scope and make sure those are projects that the campuses really see worthwhile.”

Eisenacher said Georgia State has also asked for a certain amount of retail shelf space in facilities.

“It is at this point kind of in deliberations on whether that will be retail shelf space or a food service shelf space,” he said. “…There is space in the first floor of the facility and it will be likely one of those two options.”

Corvias will work with Georgia State over the specific plans over the next two to three months. The decision for more beds in the future is up to the Board of Regents and individual campuses, according to Eisenacher.

“I know they are calling this a phase one and I think there’s an assumption that there will be additional phases in the future. But that’s all kind of evolving at this point,” he said.




Maintaining quality and affordability

Charlie Sutlive, head of USG communications, said Corvias as a concessionaire has had extensive experience in multi-family and student housing.

“They are a provider of military housing,” he said. “They plan to use Georgia and local based contractors and suppliers in the construction on new housing throughout the state.”

He also said they have had a successful track record with developing, financing and managing housing.

The Public-Private Partnership will also help keep the cost of student housing low and affordable, according to Sutlive.

“We expect our campus housing partner will bring innovative design ideas to improve the overall quality of our campus housing experience,” he said.

Rental rates for student housing will be based on the Board of Regents and vary among the campuses. There is also a rental rate and limit that must be maintained every year, according to Eisenacher.

Sutlive said students need access to safe, quality and affordable housing options while they attend school.

“It is an ongoing challenge to build and finance large projects such as student housing to keep costs affordable,” he said. “We are always looking at ways to keep costs down and still provide quality education and student services.”

Future plans for the university

Each campus will be tailored needs unique of the individual institutions in order to attract, educate and graduate growing numbers of students, according to the release.

“The University System will retain oversight of the campus-housing partnership, have a governance process in place and campuses will continue to be responsible for residence life programming for students,” the release states.

Jerry Rackliffe, senior vice president for finance and administration, said Georgia State is excited about the partnership.

“It will help us provide affordable housing for our students while also using Corvias’ expertise and investment to maintain our current housing,” he said.

Within the partnership Georgia State will be involved with designing the university’s upcoming housing facilities. They will also provide student life, security and financial administration for the housing, according to Rackliffe.

“Corvias will only be developing housing for Georgia State University as we will continue using current processes for academic and other buildings,” he said.


Ciara Frisbie and Anna Yang also contributed to this report.