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DEARBORN, MI-The University of Michigan-Dearborn has purchased Ford Motor Company’s Fairlane Training and Development Center on Hubbard Drive here for $33 million.

The university will use the property to expand its campus, moving its School of Management and School of Education to the new space. UM-Dearborn and Ford closed on the deal Sept. 5. The Ford facility is two connected buildings with approximately 318,000 gross sf on approximately 30 acres with 1,000 parking spaces.

“This historic acquisition has the potential to transform our campus in many ways,” says chancellor Daniel Little. “The buildings were designed to provide high-quality educational spaces in a variety of formats, and will dramatically enhance the learning environments available to our students. The classrooms and other learning spaces are well suited to advanced interactive teaching methods and the facility will provide an attractive destination for students in our growing graduate and professional programs in management and education.”

As with other recent capital outlay projects at public universities in Michigan, the state has appropriated 75% of the total purchase price. The university will borrow the required 25% match with long-term bonds. Ford intends to lease back part of the facility for several years, which will help the university cover the debt burden and operating costs of the facility, Little says.

“Ford’s generosity and vision led to the establishment of this campus in the 1950s; their support for our programs has nourished us in the years since; and their sale of this facility to us reflects the corporation’s confidence in our mission for the decades ahead,” Little says.

UM-Dearborn was established in 1959 with a gift of 200 acres of land and $6 million from the Ford. Classes will be offered on the new addition beginning in January 2004.

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