Gov. Scott, Cabinet approve land deal for new FSU Business School

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On Wednesday, Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Cabinet approved a land exchange for a significant expansion of the Florida State University College of Business.

FSU President John Thrasher, who left the state Senate last week to take the job, says the new facility would improve employment opportunities for graduates. Currently, FSU estimates half of new College of Business graduates quickly land jobs at a salary of about $42,000 a year. Thrasher adds that 75 percent of new graduates find similar work within six months.

“With the new facility, we believe it will be better,” says Thrasher, an alumnus who graduated 49 years ago from the FSU College of Business.

The FSU land swap gives the school a 5.34-acre parcel near the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center, where FSU plays home basketball games. The Tallahassee Community Redevelopment Agency currently holds the land.

On the site will be a new building called Legacy Hall, to cost between $65 million and $75 million, housing the FSU College of Business and School of Hospitality. With a $1 billion capital campaign underway at FSU, Thrasher intends to use private donations to cover most construction costs.

In exchange, FSU will pay the city agency $960,000 and provide three parcels totaling 5.74 acres. State records show the agency intends to redevelop the land into mixed-used developments.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.