Rochester Institute of Technology has taken out $346.2 million in bonds through the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York in anticipation of major building and renovation projects on campus.
Nearly half the funds will go toward new construction and renovations, while the rest would refinance a bank loan and other bonds taken out when interest rates were higher.
“We are pleased to support our higher education partners through the issuance of these bonds,” said Reuben R. McDaniel III, acting president and CEO of the dormitory authority. “With these low-cost bonds, the Rochester Institute of Technology has achieved a cost-effective way to ensure its students are provided with up-to-date facilities where they can collaborate and innovate, setting them up for success.”
Chief among the new projects would be what’s being called the Innovation Maker and Learning Complex, connecting the Wallace Library and the Student Alumni Union. It would be the largest building project since the university opened the Henrietta campus 51 years ago. The complex, scheduled to open in 2022, would include 150,000 square feet, and create a meeting space for arts and technology.
The building is expected to cost more than $100 million to construct and has already received $17.5 million from entrepreneur and RIT grad Austin McChord as part of his $50 million donation in 2017. Additional fundraising will be required for the building projects, the university noted.
Other new structures include a musical theater building and athletic stadium complex.
University officials said the bonding was obtained now to take advantage of low interest rates.
RIT President David Munson said, “This new bond issue allows refinancing that will produce millions in savings due to near historic low interest rates, while also giving us capital to begin many exciting, transformative projects that will enhance the campus and provide construction jobs in the region.”
The bonding will also support renovation of student housing, including improved accessibility and new sustainability measures.
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