Faulkner: UT won't buy Motorola site

Austin Business Journal
July 22, 2003

The University of Texas won't purchase an idle Austin chipmaking plant owned by Motorola Inc. because of $9 million annual maintenance costs, UT President Larry Faulkner says.

The 1 million-square-foot plant seemed to be the answer to UT's need for more classroom, office and research space. The 225-acre site is on Ed Bluestein Boulevard in East Austin, just five miles from UT's main campus.

Faulkner says UT's J.J. Pickle Research Campus in Northwest Austin now will be the probable expansion site.

In a memo to UT staff, Faulkner wrote: "In the end, we simply cannot take on the recurring costs of operating such a large facility at a time when we do not have adequate recurring resources to maintain the facilities for which we are already responsible."

Faulkner says Motorola had offered a good price for the Ed Bluestein site.

Schaumburg, Ill.-based Motorola [NYSE: MOT] employs 8,000 people in Austin. The Austin-based Semiconductor Products Sector is the world's largest producer of embedded chips.

© 2003 American City Business Journals Inc.