Burlington College's Board of Trustees has approved a deal to sell 25 acres of its lakefront land to Burlington developer Eric Farrell in order to reduce the college's debt burden, school officials announced Thursday.
Under the deal, Farrell is set to pay about $4 million to the Catholic Diocese - money the college currently owes the diocese, which sold the land to the college in 2010. Farrell will also pay $3.5 million to the college so it can pay down other debt; namely People's United Bank, which holds about $6.1 million of the college's debt.
The college is holding on to 7.3 acres, including the old Catholic Diocese building in which the college is based as well as some room to expand.
The agreement also gives conservation groups 60 days to step in and buy the land from the college for the same $7.5 million Farrell has agreed to pay. Those groups, however, say such a move is unlikely unless the city - still relatively quiet about the land deal - steps in to help.
Correction 4:04 p.m. Dec 9, 2014 College officials signed the land deal with Eric Farrell Dec. 9, not Nov. 20. On Nov. 20, the college's board agreed to the deal but had not yet formally signed it.