By BRAD KEITH
STEPHENVILLE — Tarleton State University was in need of land for resident parking, and Stephenville ISD had just the right answer at just the right location.
SISD trustees voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve the sale of 3.075 acres of land to Tarleton at a price of $308,000, and to earmark the money for future real estate considerations.
The land, currently a patch of grass immediately north of the Century Link and immediately east of Chamberlain Elementary School just off Frey Street between Garfield and Lillian streets, will be converted into a parking lot serving Tarleton students living in a new residence hall set to be opened this August.
After discussing the land purchase – among other things – for about an hour in executive session, trustees still had questions for Tarleton vice president of Institutional Advancement Dr. Kyle McGregor, mostly concerning whether Tarleton had plans to continue expanding its campus footprint north of Frey, specifically in the areas surrounding Chamberlain and Hook elementary schools.
McGregor assured trustees Tarleton is currently working to satisfy its recently released campus development plan that focuses on land the university already owns. He said Tarleton’s interest in this purchase of land was solely to provide residential parking open only to students who will live in the new residence hall being constructed along the south side of Frey Street.
“We will continue to work on our fringes to provide parking, but we are focused on how we can more efficiently maximize land we already own,” said McGregor, who also noted the university, under the leadership of President F. Dominic Dottavio, would not entertain the notion of eminent domain for the purpose of expansion.