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The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Texas State purchases Sanctuary Lofts and Vistas apartment complexes

Delaney Compean

On Dec. 1, 2023, the Sanctuary Lofts and Vistas apartment complexes paused granting new leases as Texas State began purchasing both complexes.

Texas State finalized its purchase of Sanctuary Lofts and Vistas from American Campus Communities (ACC) on Dec. 18. Residents of both complexes were informed of the purchase via printed letter on Dec. 19. The properties, located on North St. and N. Fredericksburg St., respectively, will be added to Texas State’s on-campus housing inventory and would be the first entry into large-scale upperclassmen housing for fall 2024.

“Last spring, [Texas State] engaged in a housing demand study… one of the recommendations from the study was to increase upperclassmen housing, particularly apartment-style [housing],” William Mattera, executive director of Housing and Residential Life, said.

Texas State plans for the purchase are to alleviate issues of housing availability for students wanting to live near campus.

“One of the things [Texas State] hears from students is properties close to campus fill really quickly,” Mattera said. “Then [many] students who aren’t looking for housing in the fall or don’t have access to a car… don’t have the ability to get housing [close to campus].”

According to Mattera, the complexes will undergo some transformations as a part of their transition into the university housing inventory. While legally bound to honor current leases as written, Texas State will no longer offer new leases to non-student residents of both properties and will transition payments on future leases to paying per semester instead of the current monthly model.

“It will look more like an on-campus population,” Mattera said. “We would anticipate moving RA’s there [at the complexes].”

Mattera said residents over 21 will still be allowed to have alcohol and tobacco at the complexes.

Mattera also said first-year students may be moved into the complexes should there be housing overflows or an inability to place first-year students in traditional on-campus dormitories.

“Our preference will be to place first-year students in our normal inventory,” Mattera said. “There will be some first-year students that qualify or need to live in these properties, and [Texas State] will work with those on a case-by-case basis.”

Another change coming to the properties will be in the staff makeup, as ACC employees were notified on Dec. 1 they should begin looking for new jobs, as they might not be retained once the properties are transitioned to the university.

One ACC employee agreed to speak anonymously to The University Star about the purchase.

“[ACC] is looking at transferring a few of us to other ACC properties,” the employee said. “[The sale] is definitely annoying because I planned to keep this job until I graduated. But what are you gonna do? It’s bigger than all of us.”

Texas State, however, does plan to begin interviewing current employees to possibly keep them at the properties once the transition is complete.

“[The university] staffs our buildings very differently than ACC does,” Mattera said. “[Texas State] is in the process now of looking at [the employees’] positions and seeing if they fit in the system on campus.”

Additionally, some residents did not learn of the sale until after Dec. 19 when many returned home from winter break and found the letter of sale in their apartments.

“I came into my apartment [on Jan. 12] and there was a letter on the counter,” Adam Long, a resident at the Vistas and a computer science sophomore, said. “I asked my roommate about it and that’s how I found out.”

Despite the shocking news Long said he is optimistic about living in a university-owned complex.

“I wasn’t really too bothered by it,” Long said. “My dorm experience was really good, so I honestly had a positive mindset [about the purchase].”

Texas State plans to begin reaching out to residents of both complexes within the week of Jan. 18 and will start granting new leases in the weeks coming after.

“Our hope is in the next couple weeks to answer [resident questions] and encourage them to contact us with those questions,” Mattera said. “We hope [residents] will realize that living in on-campus housing allows them to have a more holistic view as a student and not just a tenant.”

American Campus Communities did not respond for comment.

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