Education: Condo of the Mind

Down in St. Petersburg, Fla., where sun-seeking retirees are as plentiful as six-packs of Gatorade, Eckerd College has quite another capital idea. Eckerd, founded in 1958, has only 1,120 undergraduates and relies on a smallish $8 million endowment. But among its assets are 267 palmy, balmy acres of campus right on beautiful Boca Ciega Bay. Eckerd's idea: build houses on some of its land and sell or rent them to retirees. The college wants to put up 500 condominiums and a 270-unit high-rise—complete with nearby shopping center, conference hall, nursing facility and marina. Eckerd considers all this to be part of...

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