PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University has reached an agreement to purchase Adams Mall, located on N.E. Colorado Street near the Pullman campus, for $1.5 million from local businessman Earl Russell. The purchase is subject to approval of the Board of Regents; it is expected to be on the agenda for the regents’ Oct. 22 meeting.

The university plans to seek bids from a management company to oversee the day-to-day operation of the 36,046 square-foot facility. The leases of the existing businesses in the mall will be honored until they expire. Those businesses then would have to negotiate with the management company if they want to extend their leases.

“This is a key piece of property adjacent to our campus,” said Melvin Taylor, director of special projects for WSU’s Office of Business Affairs. “In the long run, it is possible that the campus will need to expand into this area. In the meantime, we are interested in revitalizing this property and providing a place for businesses that will serve students and other residents in the College Hill neighborhood.”

In recent years, the university has purchased and renovated several structures in the College Hill neighborhood, which is home to a mix of student and long-term residents.

Adams Mall currently includes two restaurants, a bar, a haircutting salon, a market and vacant space. The purchase will include an adjacent 1,488 square-foot building, which houses a pizza franchise, and a parking lot.

Taylor said the management company would be responsible for determining the best future mix of businesses for the mall, but the university would expect to be involved in that process.