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A Rough Guide to a P3 Development Timeline

Many institutions are embracing public private partnerships (P3) to unlock the value of their campus properties, generate revenue, and create attractive campus facilities. Many colleges and universities see P3s as a prime method to accomplish the construction of new student housing facilities with retail spaces on the first and second floors. Others utilize P3s to renovate or revamp existing housing facilities. P3s, if done correctly, produce facilities that generate revenue for the institution and draw students into the campus.

A P3 development can take years to complete from the initial planning to final opening of the facility. Before construction even begins, however, there are several key milestones you should be aware of.

First a clear timeline is essential to successfully getting a P3 development off the ground.  This timeline should identify the key steps and outcomes over the first 20 weeks of the development project before the final negotiations with the developer occur.

The first two months of the project should be used for diagnostics and exploration–the outcome should be a clear set of priorities and needs that can subsequently be included in the request for proposals (RFP).  

The next three months should be focused on RFP development and dissemination, as well as selection and vetting of the developers.

Campus visits and presentations for the developers are key milestones with the culminating event of this phase being the selection of two finalists and identification of the winning developer.

At the end of five months, the institution should be ready to move into the P3 development contract negotiation phase.