Dobie Center gets new management, study space

Claire Ricke

Change is coming to the Dobie Center and its former theater.

Months after announcing the off-campus residence hall would undergo a $4 million renovation for the fall semester, the Carlton Group, which owns Dobie, announced Campus Evolution Villages will now manage the off-campus residence hall in July.

“Dobie Center is ideally located at the edge of the campus and has always been the go-to property for students from around the country and the world attending UT-Austin and the renovations have catapulted the property back to the forefront,” Andrew Stark, Campus Evolution Villages CEO, said in a statement.

The Carlton Group also announced the former Dobie Center Theater space will be reconfigured by Regus, a company that creates workspaces, into a study and collaboration space for students, faculty and business professionals. The new center will offer updated furnishings, high-speed Internet, printing centers, meeting areas and a 24-hour accessible concierge.   

The space will be open to various companies, firms and industries affiliated with the University. The budget for the new center is over $100 per foot in renovations to be invested by the new tenant.

The theater closed in 2010 and has been inactive ever since. Howard Michaels, Carlton Group CEO, said although he is sad to see any potential of its revivial come to an end, he is excited for Regus Center to come to a location across from the UT campus. 

“Our first priority at Dobie is to provide our students with a great living experience and to also provide a nurturing environment which the Regus suits will facilitate,” Michaels said.

The new addition to Dobie will include executive suits for international companies seeking to do business with the campus. There will also be public and private workspaces for students in addition to student lounges for working on group projects or hosting study groups. 

Expected to be completed by the end of the year, the Regus facility will be open to all students. The center is aimed to reach completion by the end of 2014.

“We are looking forward to providing their wonderful services for all of University of Texas to enjoy,” Michaels said.

Machelle Ralls, Dobie Center general manager, said the new Regus Center will include presentation areas, business hotspots and video conferencing.

“The Regus Center will be a great amenity for the Dobie students and UT students and faculty who live off campus and need a place to work or study in between classes,” Ralls said.

The new Regus Center will be accessible from street level and will overlook Guadalupe Street.