Followups – April 2015
Sweet Briar scheduled to close this summer
The board of directors of Sweet Briar College announced at the end of February the 114-year-old women’s college will close this summer. Sweet Briar faced “insurmountable financial challenges,” according to a statement released by the college.
A group of angry alumnae, however, hired attorneys and created a nonprofit corporation to fight the move. Troutman Sanders LLP will represent Saving Sweet Briar Inc., which also is raising money for the school.
Many observers speculated that rapidly growing Liberty University in Lynchburg might want to buy the Sweet Briar campus. However, Jerry Falwell Jr., Liberty’s president, told The Washington Post he had no immediate interest in the property.
Sweet Briar would be the third Virginia private college to close in the past three years. St. Paul’s College, a historically black school in Lawrenceville, closed in 2013, and Virginia Intermont College in Bristol shut down last year.
Sweet Briar’s demise would leave Virginia with just two women’s colleges, Mary Baldwin College in Staunton and Hollins University in Roanoke. Hampden-Sydney College near Farmville is one of only four men’s colleges remaining in the U.S.
Virginia Business looked at the fortunes of Virginia’s same-sex colleges in its November 2013 issue.
Stone Brewing project clears hurdle
A unanimous vote by Richmond City Council in early March removed a potential hurdle in Stone Brewing Co.’s plan to build a brewery and restaurant in the city.
Stone, a California-based craft brewer, announced last year that Richmond would be the site of its highly sought-after East Coast brewery. But the city’s assistance in the second phase of the project, the restaurant, drew opposition from Richmond restaurant and brewery owners.
The March vote transferred control of the vacant city-owned Intermediate Terminal Building on the James River to the Richmond Economic Development Authority. Stone plans to open its restaurant and beer garden on the property.
Virginia Business looked at the Stone restaurant controversy in a review of last year’s major economic development deals in the March issue.
In the March issue, an article on the state’s colleges and universities referred to Virginia Tech as Virginia’s largest school in terms of full-time students. Tech is Virginia’s largest public, four-year university. However, based on full-time students, Liberty University, a private, nonprofit school in Lynchburg, is Virginia’s largest school with 38,258 students.