Georgia-based company selected as master firm for Nicholson Gateway Project

RISE Real Estate has been chosen as the master development firm for the Nicholson Gateway Project, and it could also be the lead firm for the possible redevelopment of six 1960s-era residence halls on LSU’s campus, the LSU Property Foundation announced today.

RISE Real Estate, based in Valdosta, Georgia, beat out one other finalist, Austin, Texas-based American Campus Communities, to lead the public-private partnership to design, build and operate a mixed-use retail and residential project on 28 acres along Nicholson Drive between Skip Bertman Drive and West Chimes Street.

“We were very impressed with the four firms that were interviewed during the process, and especially with RISE Real Estate,” Rob Stuart, chair of the Nicholson Gateway Development Project Committee, says in a statement. “We look forward to making this exciting project a reality for the LSU community.”

RISE Real Estate has proposed a project team that includes Baton Rouge-based Remson Haley Herpin; The Lemoine Company, which has a Baton Rouge office; and Niles Bolton Associates. The firm will choose its own team for the project.

Ten firms responded to a request for qualifications issued for the project during the fall, and five of those 10 were asked to submit a request for proposals.

LSU officials visualize more than 1,600 beds in a mix of apartment- and suite-style units. The project will include residential lounge, study, community and food service spaces, as well as between 30,000 and 50,000 square feet of new retail space.

LSU will not fund any portion of the project—it’s 100% privately funded—but the Board of Supervisors will have some say in the scope of the project.

Construction on the project is slated to begin later this year, with businesses and students moving in around fall 2018.

RISE Real Estate also will have the opportunity to bid on replacing six, 1960s-era residence halls on campus. LSU’s housing master plan calls for replacing Miller, Herget, McVoy, Acadian, Broussard and Kirby Smith halls with some 2,100 new beds—an expensive process that could take 15 years or more.

—Ryan Broussard

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