The allure of Eagle Ford Shale money is proving to be a tough competitor for Texas A&M University-Kingsville and the Diocese of Corpus Christi.
A major construction project that the two entities had partnered together to create is being delayed. They broke ground on a major student housing project last October, and it was supposed to be finished in time for the start of this fall semester, but it hasn't happened.
Why the delay? The Diocese of Corpus Christi said sub-contractors are being hired for other Eagle Ford Shale related jobs, which are paying top dollar.
"It's been difficult to schedule the trades for the, you know, the subs, because of Eagle Ford Shale," said Msgr. Louis Kihneman III of the Diocese of Corpus Christi. "We'll have a sub that's scheduled, and then they'll move off and go onto Eagle Ford Shale. So the project itself, we're working hard to get back on schedule and get it done."
When it is done, the project will include a new St. Thomas Aquinas Newman Center, a 300-seat chapel and a 278-bed housing complex, that will be open to all students -- not just Catholics.
Construction is still underway, but the Diocese says the students that were supposed to live in the new dorms are being taken care of.
"The University has been able to place all 160 students either in dormitories or hotel rooms," Kihneman said. "The hotels, they have security guards for them, and then they're providing transportation for each of the students, and it's actually to those in the hotels. It's no cost to the families."
The Diocese says it does not have a final date of when the construction will be done. They are hoping for October, but they say as fast as they can get it done, it will be done.
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