The University of Port Elizabeth (UPE), came into being on 31 January 1964 with the adoption by Parliament of Act 1 of 1964. The first academic year commenced on 1 March 1965. Built on 830 hectares of land donated by the then Port Elizabeth City Council UPE was the country's first dual-medium residential university. The university later merged with the PE Technikon and the Port Elizabeth campus of Vista University (Vista PE) to form the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU). Opened on 1 January 2005, this union of three unique institutions came about as a result of governments' countrywide restructuring of higher education institutions.