Milwaukee—A second phase of affordable housing and retail has gotten under way here. The Martin Luther King Economic Development Corp. started King Commons II, a $5.2 million mixed-use project, in partnership with the city of Milwaukee and the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority.

The development includes 15 affordable housing units to be built on five adjoining lots. Nine more affordable units will be included at a separate location in a two-story building, which will also include 2,200 square feet of retail space. This building will be located across the street from the first King Commons structure.

The developer purchased land from the city of Milwaukee and then received a total of $13.4 million in low-income housing tax credits (LIHTCs) for both phases of the project, with the latest phase getting $4.6 million in financing and $5.6 million in LIHTCs.


Dranoff Chosen for Revitalization Project

Lower Merion Township, Pa.—Dranoff Properties has been selected by township officials to develop a $150 million revitalization project for Ardmore Station in this community outside of Philadelphia.

Dranoff’s initial phase calls for 335 units, 60,000 square feet of retail space, 12,000 square feet of office space, and approximately 650 public parking spaces and 500 private parking spaces. The four-phase project would take about five years to develop. One of the early phases will include building a new train station to replace the 1950s-era railroad depot. Some of the units may be condos, but that exact number was not disclosed. The first phase of the units, 100 or so, will be rental units.

Earlier this year, Dranoff Properties signed a letter of intent with the New Jersey Performing Arts Center to develop Two Center St., a 30- to 40-story apartment building next to the arts center in Newark, N.J. The project, which will also feature about 30,000 square feet of retail space, is expected to cost $200 million to $250 million and take about two years to build.

DRA Advisors Acquire Multi-State Portfolio

New York City—Locally based HSBC Bank USA has arranged $350 million in Freddie Mac loans to DRA Advisors, also based in the Big Apple, for the purchase of a 22-property multifamily portfolio. The assets total 4,781 units and are in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.

Earlier this year, DRA Advisors formed a joint venture with Steven D. Bell & Co., of Greensboro, N.C., to acquire 86 apartment properties from Denver-based UDR, Inc., for $1.7 billion.


McShane Breaks Ground in Austin

Austin, Texas—McShane Corp., based in Chicago, has broken ground on the new 276-unit Residences at Oak Hill, located in the southwestern part of the city.

The garden-style community will feature a combination of one-, two-, and three-bedroom units ranging in size from 600 square feet to 1,300 square feet. The complex will include parking lots, with additional covered garage and carport parking available for rent.

The first units will be available for residents in January 2009.

Financing for the development has been arranged by the Dallas office of Holliday Fenoglio Fowler. Transwestern Realty Finance Partners, on behalf of Transwestern Mezzanine Realty Partners III, provided the financing for the land acquisition, while Guaranty Bank is providing constuction finanrcing.

Mixed Use Breaks Ground in Dallas Suburb

Richardson, Texas—L&B Realty Advisors and Winston Capital Corp. have broken ground on Brick Row, a $140 million mixed-use development that will be anchored by a light-rail station. The 30-acre project, located about 10 miles north of downtown Dallas, will include 500 marketrate units.

Brick Row will also include 100,000 square feet of office space and 36,000 square feet of retail space. Dunkin’ Donuts has already signed on to lease space at the 22-acre site, which is expected to be completed in 2010.

Condos Planned for NOLA

New Orleans—Locally based Lauricella Land Co. is planning to build Belle Rive, a condominium complex that will sit on 90 acres in the Greater New Orleans area along the Mississippi River. The project will have 15 stories of condominium residences, all with golf course and river views. The first floor will have retail space, a clubhouse, and other amenities


Arbor Provides Acquisition Financing

Fayetteville, N.C.—Arbor Commercial Funding has provided a $2.4 million acquisition loan for Watauga Manor Apartments, a 79-unit complex here, for an undisclosed buyer.

The 10-year loan, using Fannie Mae’s 3MaxExpress program, amortizes on a 30-year schedule and carries a note rate of 6.61 percent.

Phillips Building Two Tampa Projects

Tampa, Fla.—Locally based Phillips Development & Realty is planning two Class A developments here.

Phillips Delaney Creek will be a 290-unit, four-story building with one- and two-bedroom apartments. Half of that parcel of land will remain undeveloped, as it is wetlands. Phillips bought the land for $31 million.

The other development, Phillips Magnolia Park, will be a 300-unit, three-story apartment building located next to a 75,000-square-foot shopping area. Phillips purchased that parcel for $30 million.

Construction for both Phillips Delaney Creek and Phillips Magnolia Park is expected to begin in late 2008.


Carmel Partners Diversifies Portfolio

San Francisco—Carmel Partners, a real estate investment firm based here, has acquired three multifamily properties here and in Honolulu and Los Angeles for its Carmel Partners Investment Fund II. Terms of the transactions on the diverse properties were not disclosed.

The 19-story Grosvenor Suites, a 205-unit market-rate building, is located in San Francisco’s Nob Hill neighborhood. The Hawaii acquisition, the 857-unit Kukui Gardens, is a 1970-built affordable apartment complex located in downtown Honolulu. The third acquisition is the Westwood Collection, a four-property, 153-unit portfolio of assets located on the southern edge of the campus of the University of California, Los Angeles.

Laramar Plans Rehab in Seattle Suburb

Burien, Wash.—The Laramar Group has acquired a 543-unit community in this Seattle suburb through its Laramar Multi-Family Value Fund, which allows the firm to buy up to $1.4 billion in multifamily assets. The acquisition of Vintage Park marks the company’s 15th purchase for the fund. The price was not disclosed.

The fund closed in December 2006 with $350 million in commitments for purchases of value-added assets across the United States. Recent acquisitions include the 694-unit Waterford Lakes Apartments in Charlotte, N.C., earlier this year.

Vintage Park is a 44-structure garden-style community that was developed on a 25-acre site in the 1940s. At the time of the sale, the property was an affordable housing complex, but Laramar plans a $12 million renovation and will rename the complex the Heights at Burien. The redeveloped community is expected to be a marketrate development.