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Education Realty Trust, Inc (EDR - Snapshot Report), a real estate investment trust (REIT), recently closed  financing of $53.6 million for the construction of a third-party student housing development on the Mansfield University campus in Mansfield, Pennsylvania.

This is the second phase of the project and will consist of two buildings with 684 beds in 322 fully furnished suite-style units. Building techniques have used modular construction and will feature a multi-purpose room, conference room and various other state-of-the-art amenities. Education Realty recently completed Phase I of the project, featuring a 634-bed building that is fully leased for fall 2013.

With this deal, the company has strengthened its relationship with Mansfield University. The development further reinforces Education Realty's policy of investment in the high-growth collegiate housing industry as it focuses on premium quality student housing facilities.

Education Realty is one of the largest owners, developers and managers of collegiate housing in the U.S. It also provides third-party management services, including residence life and student development, marketing, leasing administration, strategic relationships and accounting services for student housing communities owned by educational institutions.

The company owns or manages 65 communities in 24 states with more than 36,300 beds in over 12,000 units.The ideal acquisition targets of the company are generally located in markets that have stable or increasing collegiate populations and high barriers to entry.

Education Realty currently retains a Zacks #3 Rank, which translates into a short-term Hold rating. We also have a long-term Neutral recommendation on the stock. One of its competitors, American Campus Communities, Inc (ACC - Snapshot Report) also holds a Zacks #3 Rank.

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