Condos set to open in the summer

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    SkyRock Condominiums, a new housing development on the southwest corner of Cantey Street and Sandage Avenue east of campus, is the latest in a string of housing developments to begin construction near campus.

    Steve King, a representative of Savannah Developers, the project builders, said the developers are expecting students to be the primary residents.

    The three-story building will have 22 condominium units and an underground parking garage, King said.

    The development will also have a rooftop terrace for use by residents that will have seating areas, a large flat-screen television, a grill and a fireplace, King said.

    In order to blend with the existing homes and campus architecture, the exterior of the building will mainly be comprised of brick and stone, King said.

    The interior of each condominium unit will have three to four bedrooms depending on the floor plan, and every bedroom will have its own bathroom, King said. Every unit will have a common living area with hardwood floors and a kitchen with granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and European-style cabinetry, he said.

    Depending on the number of bedrooms, each unit will range from $360,000 to $420,000, King said. These are pre-construction price ranges and will likely increase as construction progresses, he said.

    Jasmine Batiste, a sophomore biology major, said despite the price range, the development could still manage to attract students.

    “I think there are students here who are able to afford that,” Batiste said. “But I think there’s also a lot who won’t.”

    Kristen Beck, a junior accounting major and sales representative for Savannah Developers, said the development is convenient because it is near the university.

    “Since it’s so close to campus you can walk there and you don’t have to worry about parking,” Beck said.

    Linda Antinone, president of the Frisco Heights Neighborhood Association where the development is located, said the condominiums replaced an older apartment complex that had become run-down.

    Antinone said the developers met with the neighborhood association several times to negotiate what would be best for the area. Some who opposed the project had concerns about the effects a larger development would have on an older neighborhood with smaller streets, she said.

    King said the developers had three to four homeowner meetings with the surrounding neighborhood to negotiate the design of the building.

    “If they were not behind the project you probably would not see us building it,” King said.

    Despite the concerns, a majority of the neighborhood thought the new development would be an improvement to the area, Antinone said.

    “A lot of people felt like this was going to be a more positive thing than what was already there,” Antinone said.

    King said the project will be completed in June 2009.

    The property owners, FW Development Group LP, also own other properties in the area and have plans to build more housing projects aimed for students, King said.

    “Based on the success we’ve had on similar campuses, we expect to do more projects after SkyRock,” King said.

    King said the condominiums will likely draw in students easily.

    The developers have experience in housing projects at other campuses and this is their first project to build in the TCU area, King said.

    “We’ve just been a big fan of TCU for years,” King said.

    Other housing developments that have recently begun construction near campus include the Cantey Place Townhomes on Parmer Avenue and the South University Centre apartments on University Drive south of Bluebonnet Circle.