Los Angeles-based developer Urban Partners LLC, in a joint venture with New York-based investor Blackstone Real Estate Advisors, broke ground in July on University Gateway, a new transit-oriented development that will bring a mix of retail and student and faculty housing to the University of Southern California (USC) campus.

The project includes 421 upscale apartments for 1,600 students, 83,000 square feet of retail and 11,000 square feet of student facilities. The university needs more quality housing, says Daniel Rosenfeld, a partner at Urban Partners, suggesting that this project will hopefully generate more development. The project is on schedule for delivery in time for the fall semester 2010. The eight-story project was delayed for several years by an intimidation campaign of competitor Conquest Student Housing LLC that culminated in a lawsuit brought by Urban Partners and USC, alleging that Conquest had engaged in illegal practices and foul play to monopolize the USC student housing market. Rosenfield declined to discuss the lawsuit.