President Gary Kachanoski has announced that the purchase of the former Battery Hotel property has been finalized.
The deal closed on March 1, following approval by the university’s Board of Regents and the provincial government in accordance with the Memorial University Act. The government also approved the university’s expenditure of up to $16 million for renovations to the space.
“We are looking forward to having a more tangible and dynamic presence in downtown St. John’s,” said Dr. Kachanoski. “Not only does the property address some of our most pressing space needs, it will also allow some university units that engage with the public regularly to do so from a highly accessible location.”
The university purchased the former hotel property for $9.5 million. The building and operations will be cost-neutral to the university. Funding will be provided from redirecting lease expenditures for off-campus space, the endowment fund and revenue generated from university activities at the facility.
“Now that the sale is final, we can begin our detailed consideration of which units would be more appropriately located closer to the city’s downtown core, and we will be consulting with key stakeholders throughout that process,” said Dr. Kachanoski. “We value the integrity of the communities in which we live and work, and to that end we are committed to ongoing, transparent communication with our new neighbours.”