The Perks of Living Near a College or University

VIDA, the new community adjacent to Texas A&M University – San Antonio begins construction this month. The planned community will shape the ‘university residential neighborhood and town center’ for the area. And while some may think a ‘College Town’ is only for students and faculty, living in or near a university has a special spark of life that permeates throughout the community. There is something unique and vibrant when living in this type of town that you won’t find anywhere else.

 Universities Are Cultural Hubs

When people think of university, they probably think of a classroom. However, curiosity and learning don’t stop there. Nor do they stop where the campus ends. A university is not an isolated place, and it fosters a special way of life for the whole community that surrounds it. A university attracts people from around the world, bringing with them their own stories, ideas, and customs that keep a town alive. This cultural hub is a place for people of all ages. In fact, now more than ever, people over the age of 55 are moving to and retiring in university communities for just that reason.

 The Nexus for Events, Activities, and Commerce

A university town supports a thriving local economy, including locally owned restaurants, breweries, food trucks, bookstores, and coffee shops. Universities are areas where people want to linger – enjoy a coffee, beer, enjoy an event or grab a meal. Having a variety of different dining and events available attracts people to these vibrant towns. VIDA will have a central gathering space that will be home to shops, restaurants, bars and a Zócalo plaza that will be the hub of energy for the area.

A Comfortable Place to Live

Life in a university town doesn’t mean you’re living life stuck in the fast lane. A common misconception about a university town is that it is a place of perpetual change. In fact, most people who live there are part of a close-knit community and have lived there for years, if not their whole lives. They form lifelong friendships and raise families there, whether employed by the university or not.

University Towns Are Pedestrian Friendly

VIDA is designed to provide a variety of easy ways to move throughout the community and to campus. Greenbelt trails will weave through the neighborhood and provide an easy way to reach the campus. VIDA will also have sidewalks and pathing for bikes to support non-vehicular travel.

Unlike many traditional towns, university towns are designed to be pedestrian-friendly. Being near an educational institution means that the latest student theater production or university symphony concert may be within walking distance. Not only is there a plethora of student-created entertainment, but having a university nearby means that it will be bringing in speakers, musicians, and artists from around the world. English departments bring in a diverse array of poets and authors for live readings. Science departments bring in revolutionary minds to speak and discuss the latest scientific theories and discoveries. A campus museum will continually bring in new and thought-provoking exhibits. All this will practically be in the backyard of the VIDA San Antonio Community.


Forget spending hundreds of dollars and hours of commuting to watch your favorite sports live. University sports are right around the corner. The VIDA San Antonio community is right at Texas A&M University’s doorstep, home to the Jaguar sporting teams, beginning their first competitive year in 2021. Residents and guests will be able to walk to games to cheer on their teams.

Diversity as a Health and Leadership Benefit

Texas A&M University is a diverse campus community serving a wide variety of populations. Like many university towns, A&M-San Antonio thrives in its differences and steadily sponsors the search common ground. Studies show that people living in diverse communities have more empathy, proven to be essential for peace, and a key trait of successful leaders.

Ready for all the benefits of “University Town” living? Keep up with VIDA’s progress!

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