Casino tower eyed for temporary UNR dorm housing after gas blast

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Smoke rises above a residence hall on the University of Nevada, Reno campus on Friday in this photo posted on Twitter by Chris Floyd.

RENO, Nev. (AP) — University of Nevada, Reno officials are negotiating to house 1,300 students in a tower that is part of a casino resort while two dormitories are closed to repair damage from a July 5 natural gas explosion.

Officials said the talks with Eldorado Resorts call for the student housing department to use all of a newly renovated tower that is separate from the Circus Circus Reno casino.

A statement released Friday said security features would include placing a university police substation in the tower and having officers patrol the building.

Both dormitories will remain closed for at least a year and the most severely damaged one isn’t expected to reopen until at least the fall of 2021.

The blast blew out windows and walls but caused only minor injuries to eight people.

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