January 2005 Table of Contents

Lofty Ambitions Lofty Ambitions

Once synonymous with the New York bohemian lifestyle of SoHo and TriBeCa, the loft has come into its own as a popular choice with young professionals across America. The loft provides an unconventional, hip alternative to the suburban home where most of them grew up. And multifamily developers are buying up old factories and warehouses to meet the demand. Read more

Decade of Change Decade of Change

Ten years ago, apartments rented for an average of $724, the last of the echo boomers were still toddling around their parents' living rooms, and President Clinton was presiding over the start of the tech boom. Read more

Happy Anniversary Happy Anniversary

Ten years ago this month, a Philadelphia-area publishing company launched a new magazine. It was designed for an underserved group of business leaders—owners and managers of apartment buildings. The magazine, as I'm sure you've guessed, was MULTIFAMILY EXECUTIVE. Its survival was never guaranteed. Publishing companies launch hundreds of magazines annually, many of which fail within three years. So making it to the 10-year milestone is cause for celebration. Read more

Cleaning Up Cleaning Up

After four hurricanes leveled parts of Florida last fall, they left in their wake apartment owners picking up the phone to dial their insurance agents. But many owners didn't exactly get good news. Because of high deductibles, caps on debris-related damages and cleanup, and per-building deductibles on windstorm damages, many apartment firms had to reach into their own pockets to cover hurricane damages. Read more

Austin City Limits Austin City Limits

In the 1990s, a seemingly unstoppable economic upswing made Austin, Texas, a magnet for the upwardly mobile. According to the city's planning department, the population soared between 1990 and 2000, when Austin's 656,562 residents made it the 16th-largest city in the nation, according to the U.S. Census. Read more

Wave Runner Wave Runner

By the time Andrew Farkas landed on MULTIFAMILY EXECUTIVE's debut cover in January 1996, he had already steered Insignia Financial Group to top spots on the National Multi Housing Council's lists of top 50 managers and top 50 owners—in a mere four years. Read more

Operation Upgrade Operation Upgrade

Updating a property's kitchens, bathrooms, and clubhouse is a breeze compared to the real challenge of repositioning: easing out the old renters to make room for the new residents. Read more

Hospital Corner Hospital Corner

The headaches of rehabbing just one historic building can make any developer want to head for the hills. Try tackling 13 unique historic properties filling an entire city block in downtown Washington—one of which served as the office for Civil War nurse Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross. While many might take one look and run, JPI Cos. jumped at the opportunity. “It was basically a mess waiting to get redeveloped,” says Jim Butz, president of JPI's East Coast division. Read more

Senior Agenda Senior Agenda

More than 20 years ago, Terry Howard began his career as a sales and marketing representative for a senior living property. He obviously learned a great deal from experience. Last September, Howard became president of MBK Senior Living Communities, California-based MBK Real Estate's recently re-energized senior housing division. (The company had downsized its senior operations in the late 1990s.) Here are Howard's thoughts on his new job, senior housing, and the big issues facing the multifamily industry. Read more

Flexible Living Flexible Living

Turn the bottom level into a home office or transform the space into a guest bedroom—it's all up to the resident. West End Commons, a 91-unit live/work community being built in Oakland, Calif., boasts large, open, multi-use spaces for maximum flexibility. “Use of the space will change over time,” says Elizabeth Costello, principal of San Francisco-based Pocket Development. “Live/work is just a really versatile type of space, and it's very popular in urban areas of California.” Read more

Miami Advice Miami Advice

With its maize- and cherry-colored exterior, Valencia Apartments is a colorful sight in South Miami. But the festive-looking façade belies just how much of a nail-biter this 294-unit market-rate property—initially envisioned as student housing—was. “I put the last piece of land under contract on the last day I could file for a [comprehensive] plan amendment,” recalls James Harris, president of J.W. Harris and Co., the Hollywood, Fla., firm that assembled the parcel. Here's how the deal went down. Read more

True Crime True Crime

In a low-income Massachusetts apartment complex that never before saw enough crime to grab the attention of its owner's safety director, property managers suddenly were scrubbing graffiti from hallway walls every morning. Residents feared the colorful drawings and scribbled slang were evidence that gangs roamed the inner-city complex during the night. Read more

Q & A JANUARY Hot Product Of The Month Q & A JANUARY

Dale Phillips answers: What will be the biggest products in luxury apartments in 2005? Read more

Steel Appeal Steel Appeal

Sleek, shiny, sophisticated—stainless steel is a must for any high-end apartment or condo kitchen. And now developers can bring this modern appeal to mid-priced multifamily homes. Read more

Markethouse Lofts Markethouse Lofts

It has inspired countless books, movies, and adventures. Now, the pull of the railroad has become the inspiration for a hip, urban loft project. Read more

The Scaling Heights 2004 Builder Of The Year The Scaling Heights

Bryce Blair has a plan to house nearly your entire family. For your kids who've just left college and gotten their first jobs, the chairman of the board, CEO, and president of AvalonBay Communities offers economical AvalonBay studios and two-bedrooms in some of the hottest markets in the country. For your adult children, who may be married with good jobs, he has bigger apartments and townhouses in places where buying a single-family home is very expensive. Finally, for your retired, fun-loving parents who want to be free from home maintenance at last, he has spacious rental units near golf courses and other amenities. Read more

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