The nation's largest for-profit university isn't changing its familiar brand, but it is making its presence felt on a grander scale just outside its namesake city.
Last week, the University of Phoenix moved into a significant amount of administrative and classroom space at the Fountainhead Corporate Park in Tempe, located between Southern Ave. and Broadway Road, and between Priest Road and Interstate 10 - just across the freeway from Tempe Diablo Stadium.
The move includes the University's transition from the visible red-brick Hohokam Towers, located just up I-10 in Phoenix, to two new buildings - 1625 Fountainhead Parkway and 1601 Fountainhead Parkway - totalling nearly 440,000 square feet in usable space.
"The move is a result of the (proposed I-10) highway expansion which impacts our current classrooms in Hohokam," said an email from Rick Castellano, director of public relations for Apollo Group, the parent company of University of Phoenix. "We are currently in the process of transitioning students from Hohokam to the Fountainhead classrooms."
Both buildings, totaling nearly 439,100 square feet, are leased entirely to University of Phoenix through 2023, according to a September report by the Phoenix Business Journal. The six- and 10- story towers and nearly 1900-space parking garage on 11.33 acres - were sold in September for $137 Million, the Journal reported.
While the 10-story building at 1625 has students and faculty moving in and pouring out throughout the day - the university logo and marquee were installed on the building's north face just this week - it is unclear to what extent it is using the six-story facility at 1601. Despite the long-term lease, leasing signs are still planted in front of the building offer more than 165,000 square feet of available space.
The new Tempe location, set just three miles from Arizona State University's main Tempe campus, further entrenches the University's scope across the Valley. The school also has a large presence at the nearby Riverpoint Center devlepment near I-10 and 32nd Street, where the freeway curves north before downtown Phoenix.
That 37-acre site with 600,000 square feet of office space saw three mid-rise towers completed in 2007. It also serves as the corporate headquarters of the Apollo Group.
The University of Phoenix is the nation's largest for-profit, private university and often caters to non-traditional college students by offering online and evening classes, and continuous enrollment. It offers associates, bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees in a variety of areas of study.
Metro commercial Properties of Tempe and USAA Real Estate Company of San Antonio, Texas, purchased and developed the land in 2009 from Principal Financial Group, which had purchased the area and surrounding office buildings since 2005. The development cost of the project approached $70 million, according to a 2009 story by Engineering News Report.
Sundt Construction, of Tempe, served as general contractor to the project. Davis Architecture, also of Tempe, designed the building.
Neighboring buisnesses in and near the Fountainhead development include Sundt, Arizona Business Bank, Monster, Wells Fargo, and the East Valley Tribune.
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