2008 MFE Awards
Merit: Apartment Renovation

Submitted by: UDR The Lakeside North apartment community in Altamonte Springs, Fla., lacked a signature design. So when UDR, a REIT based in Richmond, Va., took over the property, it wanted to change the status quo.

In addition to renaming the project Altamira Place, UDR added signature architectural features at the breezeway and decorative trim around the windows and banding along the building walls. The developer also added new color schemes to connect the property to surrounding developments and replaced the existing roofs with architectural shingles.

UDR also updated individual units, adding a second bathroom to 52 units by replacing an existing closet with a bath. In all units, kitchens were modernized to create more voluminous open spaces. It replaced bi-level countertops with single countertops and added stainless steel and black appliances. It also added new light fixtures, faucets, six-panel interior doors, and wire shelving in closets.

The renovation cost about $32, 632 per unit, or $38 per square foot. This seems to be money well spent. Today, the property is 96.7 percent occupied.