As students dig into classes this week at the University of Connecticut’s flagship campus, construction on the massive Storrs Center development has nearly doubled its size from a year ago and is rapidly transforming the rural landscape into what many hope will become a college town.
In the past year, the $220 million project marched forward with the addition of another 195 apartments, pushing the total to 322, all of them rented. Leases signed with another eleven commercial tenants — three of them stores, including a boutique clothier, a health drink store and a wine and spirits shop — are expanding the number of shops, restaurants and other services to more than two dozen.
“We’re at the point that we’re seeing the Town Square in the heart of Storrs Center nearly complete,” said Howard Kaufman, managing member of the Tuxedo Park, N.Y.-based LeylandAlliance, the project’s master developer. In the next year, “it won’t have any negatives of the construction. Give it another year, and you’ll start seeing the full benefits of the project.”