University of West Florida

UK-based construction firm Balfour Beatty has been appointed as preferred bidder on a £330m mixed-use development for the University of West Florida in the US.

The development features the University Park and Northwest Village projects.

Upon completion, the University Park project will feature a range of facilities including student accommodation, a student union, a football stadium, a parking structure and plaza.

The Northwest Village project will feature a senior living community for retired faculty and persons affiliated with the university.

Balfour Beatty will deliver the contract in phases over a ten-year period, with the first phase expected to be complete in 2014.

The Balfour Beatty Campus Solutions team comprises other local firms, including Baskerville Donovan Engineering, Caldwell and Associates and the Morette Company.

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These teams will work with University of West Florida – Business Enterprises (UWF BEI) to develop the projects at the two campus locations.

Balfour Beatty will also be responsible for master planning, analysis to create design and construction efficiencies, financing and general design and construction.

Apart from the new contract, Balfour Beatty has already closed five student accommodation projects in the US and has two more in the preferred bidder stage.

The company has also achieved financial close on two projects in the UK, which include the £63m Holyrood postgraduate student accommodation and outreach centre project for the University of Edinburgh and the £45m Penglais Farm new residences project for Aberystwyth University.

Balfour Beatty CEO Andrew McNaughton said the company will work with the University of West Florida, Aberystwyth University and The University of Edinburgh to deliver the projects, which will enhance the student experience.

"Investment in student accommodation is expected to continue over the next few years on both sides of the Atlantic, with $1bn of new projects coming to market in the USA and a pipeline of around £1bn of new projects anticipated in the UK," McNaughton said.

Image: The £330m mixed-use development features the University Park and Northwest Village projects. Photo: Courtesy of University of West Florida.