Luxury High-Rise Breaks Ground in River North

Chicago—M&R Development has broken ground on Parc Huron, a 221-unit luxury high-rise in Chicago's River North neighborhood. The 21-story tower was originally planned as condominiums by developer Lennar Corp., but the company sold the site and plans to M&R last fall. Last year, Lennar also sold a 3.5-acre property in the South Loop, where it planned to build another condo community, to AvalonBay Communities, Inc., for Avalon on South Clark, a 1,000-unit, two-building rental development.

The Parc Huron will off er one-, two-, and three-bedroom units when construction is completed by mid-2010. The development will also feature 231 parking spaces for residents and a small ground-floor commercial space. Construction financing was provided by Charter One Bank and PrivateBank.

M&R Development is also drawing up plans to build a 321-unit rental tower in Chicago's Loop.

Historic Fort Shelby Hotel Gets Face-Lift

Detroit—MCP Development has finished its renovation of the historic Fort Shelby Hotel, featuring 54 apartments and two penthouses, in downtown Detroit.

The apartments are located between the 11th and 21st floors of the building, which also houses a 203-unit DoubleTree Hotel. Apartment residents will have full access to the hotel's amenities, including 24-hour dining, housekeeping, dry cleaning, valet parking, and a concierge.

There are 12 one-bedroom apartments, renting from $1,630 to $2,515, and 42 two-bedroom units, renting from $2,155 to $3,185 monthly. The penthouses are priced between $4,120 and $4,355.

The $82 million renovation of both the hotel and apartment units tapped a $14 million construction loan from ShoreBank, an $18.7 million Department of Housing and Urban Development loan, and $8 million in federal and state historic tax credits.

The hotel, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, originally opened in 1917, and a 22-story tower was added in 1927.


AvalonBay Sells Ledges

Weymouth, Mass.—Despite the capital crisis, an affiliate of Guardian Life Insurance Company of America bought Avalon Ledges, a garden apartment community. Real estate investment trust AvalonBay sold the 304-unit community for $40.2 million, or $132,000 per unit, according to local title records. That works out to a capitalization rate of 7.6 percent. The sale closed Jan. 6.

New York City-based Guardian Life has a reputation for investing in real estate when other investors have left the market, according to experts familiar with the deal.

Recently advertised rents for the one- to three-bedroom apartments at the Ledges start at $1,238. Located on state Route 53 outside of Boston, the community includes a basketball court, a fitness center, a swimming pool, and detached garages.


Bell & Co. Buys Lenox Park

Atlanta—Greensboro, N.C.-based Steven D. Bell & Co. purchased a 206-unit garden-style apartment complex here from Post Properties, Inc., for $23 million at the end of 2008.

The complex, which was built in 1995 in the Buckhead neighborhood, has been renamed The Grove at Lenox Park and is one of 30 multifamily properties Bell & Co., a real estate investment and management firm, oversees in Georgia—24 of which are in the Atlanta metro region.

“We continue to have confidence in the ongoing growth in the Atlanta area,” says Nickolay Bochilo, vice president of Bell's capital/transactions.

Square footage for units in The Grove complex average 964 square feet, with one- to three-bedroom units available in eight different models. Amenities include fully equipped gourmet kitchens, 9- to 10-foot ceilings, walk-in closets, as well as a community pool, fitness and business centers, and sport courts.

Bell & Co. is valued at $5 billion and includes approximately 55,000 apartments, 28 seniors communities, and more than 5 million square feet of retail and office properties.

Capmark Originates Financing for Complexes

Hoover, Ala.—Capmark Finance, Inc., has originated $5,925,000 and $13,375,000 in fixed-rate financing for the acquisition of Chapel Park Apartments and Madison at Shoal Run Apartments, respectively, both in the Hoover area.

Chapel Park Apartments, constructed in 1973 on five acres, is comprised of seven two- and three-story buildings with 116 one- and two-bedroom units. The loan to acquire this project, which is through Capmark's Freddie Mac program, is 80 percent loan-to-value featuring a seven-year term with the first two years being interest-only followed by a 30-year amortization.

The 75 percent loan-to-cost loan Capmark acquired for the Madison at Shoal Run Apartments also features a seven-year term with the first two years being interest-only followed by a 30-year amortization, with a fixed rate at 6.12 percent for the term of the loan. Proceeds from the loan, which was through the company's Freddie Mac Acquisition Upgrade and Acquisition Rehabilitation Mortgage program, along with acquiring the property, will go toward interior and exterior upgrades.


Alliance Residential Opens Downtown Property

Denver—Alliance Residential Co. has opened TwentyOne 01 on Market, a Broadstone Community. It is the newest apartment complex to open in downtown and the first since 2006.

TwentyOne 01 on Market is located in the Ballpark Neighborhood, just one block east of Coors Field and four blocks north of the central business district.

The property offers 226 rental units in a mixed-use development encompassing the rehabilitated, historic 60,000-square-foot Piggly Wiggly warehouse and a new eight-story midrise.

The project features 6,600 square feet of neighborhood retail space, of which more than half is leased to a high-end wine store and a dry cleaner.

The rehabilitated section houses 52 lofts, and the new mid-rise building has 174 lofts, below-ground parking, and the property's many amenities.

Trilogy on 5th Sold in San Diego

San Diego—Sperry Van Ness Real Estate Services, LLC, has completed the $10.25 million sale of the bankowned Trilogy on 5th, a 25-unit multifamily community.

Built in 2008, the Class A community is in the Bankers Hill/Park West submarket of the city.

Jim Taylor and Travis Lyon of Sperry Van Ness represented the seller, Bank of America. Taylor also represented the buyer, San Diego-based Conrad Prebys Trust.

The property received 38 written offers, according to the team, which positioned the asset as a “flight to quality” investment.