AUSTIN (Austin American-Statesman) – Austin Community College (ACC) has furthered its investment in Highland Mall by agreeing to purchase an additional 32.3 acres, including the land where the mall’s core is situated.

“ACC is experiencing tremendous growth, currently increasing by more than 4,000 students annually,” said Stephen B. Kinslow, ACC’s president and CEO. “These Highland acquisitions will play a key role in allowing us to continue meeting the vast educational and training needs of the region.”

The $14.6 million purchase, announced yesterday, rivals two earlier purchases at the site. ACC bought 18.5 acres, including a 194,000-sf Dillard’s building, last year for $4.7 million. At the beginning of this year, the college acquired an additional 12.8 acres, including a 223,000-sf Macy’s building for $5.7 million. The latest acquisition, which is expected to close mid-May, will bring the college’s investment in the Highland Mall property to $25 million.

ACC’s plans for the space include administrative offices, classrooms and a conference center. The mall is adjacent to the school’s Highland Business Center, where administrative offices are currently located.

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