University of Phoenix Online Coming to South Mountain District
Commissioned by Apollo Group Inc., the parent organization for the University of Phoenix, Sundt Construction Corp. broke ground in late October on the future worldwide headquarters of University of Phoenix Online.
Located on the outer fringes of the South Mountain District, just went of 32nd Street at Interstate 10, Riverpoint Center will feature one 10-story office building and two 6-story structures, including a full-service kitchen and dining facility for employees. The office buildings on the 38-acre campus will total 600,000 square feet. Surface parking and two structures will accommodate up to 4,500 vehicles.
“This project is partially for expansion (of University of Phoenix Online) and partially for combining a lot of locations around the city into one campus,” said Rick Mason, director of construction at Apollo Development Corp., a division of Apollo Group Inc.
Completion of the $104 million complex is scheduled for spring 2007.
Once finished, the new facilities are certain to bring additional traffic to the 32nd Street/I-10 interchange – an area that already sees heavy congestion during peak drive times.
However, according to Sina Matthes, public information officer for the city of Phoenix Street Transportation Department, no plans for street improvements are scheduled at this time. Oftentimes, changes to existing streets are outlined in development plans, she said, adding that modifications to the on- or off-ramps are handled by the Arizona Department of Transportation.
Mason confirmed no arrangements for improvements to 32nd Street were part of the design on the Riverpoint Center project.
“We went through months and months of meetings with the city and the traffic department, and they expressed what they were going to do, and then the project was finally approved by the city,” he said.
When the project was submitted to the city of Phoenix for approval, the only road improvements requested were inside Riverpoint Center. The streets inside the project are being widened to accommodate some of the traffic coming in off 32nd Street, allowing a faster flow into the new parking structures. Also, a stop light is planned for the intersection of 30th Street and Broadway Road.
The University of Phoenix was founded in 1976. Currently, 315,400 students attended Apollo Group Inc. institutions in 39 states, Puerto Rico, Alberta, British Columbia, the Netherlands and Mexico. Since opening, more than 171,000 working professionals have earned a degree from University of Phoenix. Nancy Hennigan, of University of Phoenix Online would not divulge the number of students enrolled in its division.