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UCI Housing Operator Axes Fees for Students

The largest operator of student housing at University of California-Irvine is letting tenants there get out of their lease without penalty, according to news reports.

Austin, Texas-based American Campus Communities Inc. (NYSE: ACC), a real estate investment trust that’s the country’s biggest owner and operator of student housing, said this month it will let UCI students terminate their leases for the 2019-20 school year, in response to the school’s March 10 directive for all on-campus residents to go home until the end of the coronavirus crisis.

Under the plan, disclosed in regulatory filings, ACC will not charge students cancellation fees or collect rent after they have vacated their units.

The school has indicated it will pick up the cost of ACC’s lost rent.

Some 15,800 students at UCI live on campus, and more than 6,000 of them live in properties run by ACC.

The REIT last summer took the wraps off an East Campus project called Plaza Verde, a five-story, environmentally friendly development that holds 1,441 beds.

Plaza Verde totals about 570,000 square feet, with a dedicated 523-space structured parking garage, and 15,000 square feet for a community center. Amenities include a multipurpose room, kitchen, cafe/lounge, bike room, fitness/yoga studio, offices and 18 study rooms.

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