False Alarm

Chicago-based multifamily property management company Globe Realty got quite the bomb scare. A bomb threat was left on the office manager's car on Feb. 28. The two-page, handwritten note said that there was a bomb behind the building and additional bombs placed on the company's "five cash cow locations," according to Chicago's Channel 2 News. Police responding to the scene evacuated the building and found a crude device resembling a pipe bomb that had a walkie-talkie and cell phone attached to it-the device, however, turned out to be a harmless fake. No other devices were found at Globe's multifamily properties. Police believe the threat was meant for extortion, not terrorism, but they are treating the incident seriously and still investigating.

A Dog's Life

Attention New York City critters: Beware of the dogs! In response to soaring complaints of bed bugs in the Big Apple, Advanced K9 Detectives are putting pooches to work sniffing out infestations of the bloodsucking insects that can rapidly proliferate in high-density hotels and multifamily housing stock. "We've been inundated with requests from apartment owners," company president Carl Massicott told the New York Daily News on March 12. According to the city's Department of Housing, Preservation, and Development, there were 6,889 bed bug infestation complaints last year, resulting in 2,008 citations to landlords. The recent upsurge (only 537 complaints were logged in 2004) keeps Advanced K9 Detectives' six dogs on full-time duty detecting bed bugs just as they would sniff out drugs or explosives. "A dog's nose is cutting-edge technology," Massicot says. "Our dogs are 100 percent honest and trained to work for food and love instead of profits." Experts blame the rise in bed bug infestations to a corresponding surge in international tourism due to the week U.S. dollar.

Golden Years

Everyone deserves a great place to live during the autumn of their lives-and that includes gay and lesbian retirees, says Out Properties. Seeking to tap into a rising demographic of "gaybee boomers," the St. Louis-based firm is building Marigold Creek, Arizona's first community marketed to gay retirees. The 32-acre development of 190 condos is expected to open in the fall of 2009 and follows on the heels of similar successful communities in Florida, California, and New Mexico, according to an article in the Arizona Republic. "For some people, this might be the very first time in their entire life that they've been able to live somewhere where they can be themselves," Out Properties principal Debi Purvis tells the Republic. Although Marigold Creek is designed with "gaybee boomers" in mind, anyone will be able to buy a property at the development.

Editor's note]: Send your offbeat multifamily news leads to cwood@hanleywood.com.