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University Beat

USF Close to Buying St. Pete Property from Poynter

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USF St. Petersburg

The University of South Florida Saint Petersburg continues its expansion plans. USF System officials have signed a non-binding letter of intent to buy nearly four acres of land from the Poynter Institute for $6.2 million.

According to Poynter.org, USFSP will first use the land as a staging area for the construction of the new building for the Kate Tiedemann College of Business, as well as temporary home for portable labs for the Department of Biological Sciences.

After that, Poynter reports USFSP plans to build a new academic building on the property.

Tim Franklin, president of the Poynter Institute, says the journalism school bought the land expecting to build new buildings there. Instead, the Institute is experiencing its growth online and through other off-site training locations.

The property is located between Eighth and 11th Avenues and Third and Fourth Streets South. Franklin says there are no plans to sell Poynter's headquarters on Third Street South or the adjacent waterfront property.

Adam Freeman from USF Communications & Marketing said the issue will be discussed at the USF Board of Trustees Finance and Audit Workgroup meeting next Thursday, November 20th. If it's approved, it would go to the full Board of Trustees at their next regular scheduled meeting December 4th.

Trustees are also expected at that meeting to vote on whether or not to accept Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik's donation of an acre of land in downtown Tampa to build the USF Morsani College of Medicine and the USF Health Heart Institute on.

WUSF News works with Poynter Institute's Sense-Making Project on the "Making Sense of the Media" feature heard every Friday on WUSF 89.7.