Tufts secures $250 million in bonds, will use to build new housing, dining infrastructure

Students wait in line outside Dewick-MacPhie Dining Center on Sept. 14, 2020. Nicole Garay / The Tufts Daily

Tufts announced on April 29 that it had issued $250 million in bonds that will be used to fund on-campus development projects, including the construction of a high-density, on-campus residence hall for undergraduates on the Medford/Somerville campus and the expansion of dining capacity and infrastructure, among other capital projects.

The new residence hall is part of a push to increase the percentage of students living on campus. Though the details have not been finalized, the university will be conducting a study to help it determine the optimal location and number of residents.

The university has chosen this moment to invest because of interest rates that are near historic lows; the 30-year taxable bonds were issued at a fixed rate of 3.099%. 

Patrick Collins, executive director of media relations at Tufts, shared what this means for the university.

“We are very pleased with the outcome of the bond issue,” Collins wrote in an email to the Daily. “We are looking forward to the critical investments planned for our academic and research facilities and are excited about additions being planned for student housing and dining, which will help bring more of our students onto campus, a strategic priority for the university.” 

The announcement explained that universities commonly use bond financing as a form of borrowing that funds long-term investments for infrastructure development. Investors, who may be individuals, insurance companies, investment managers or others, buy the bonds, and in return they receive periodic interest payments and, ultimately, the repayment of the original principal.

Executive Vice President Michael Howard echoed Collins’ statement, underscoring that now is the moment to invest in the future.

“We are in a strong financial position and the current low rates make it an ideal time to secure financing for our 10-year capital plan that will advance our mission and further enhance the experience of all community members,” Howard said.


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