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Marquette Cos. to Break Ground on 364-Unit M-F Project in Downtown Houston

24 Apr 2014, 1:02 am

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Naperville, Ill.-based The Marquette Cos. plans to break ground on Block 52, a 364-unit apartment building in downtown Houston.

The property encompasses a city block on the northeast side of the Houston CBD and is situated one block from Minute Maid Park.

Among the many premier features, the 29-story structure will showcase two amenity floors including a full-size, resort-style rooftop pool; it will also sport a 589-space private parking garage and approximately 7,700 square feet of ground-floor retail/restaurant space.

Apartment units will range from approximately 600 to 1,800 square feet in size, with rental rates ranging from $2.70 to $2.80 per square foot, as reported by the Houston Business Journal.

The multifamily project is expected to be complete in summer 2015.

Marquette is utilizing the Downtown Living Initiative (Chapter 380) for the development of the high-rise complex and will reportedly receive a $5.5 million benefit from the grant.

In an effort to drive more residential momentum in downtown Houston, the city council recently approved the expansion of the Downtown Living Initiative (DLI) from a cap of 2,500 residential units to 5,000 units by June 30, 2016. This will add 7,500 new residents to downtown, bringing the total to a little over 11,000, according to Downtown Houston.

The DLI is a program that incorporates financial and other benefits to promote the development of mixed-use residential projects. The initiative requires developers to comply with essential guidelines that aid in creating supportive urban designs, with residential streets featuring trees, enhanced lighting, active ground-floor uses and appropriate sidewalk design.

DLI’s first project, SkyHouse Houston, is set to open this summer at 1625 Main St. A joint venture of Batson-Cook Development Co., Peter W. Dienna and Simpson Housing, the 24-story luxury high-rise will include a mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom apartment homes with high-end finishes and amenities.

Rendering of Block 52 in Houston via The Marquette Cos. official website.



Presidium Group, Nessel Development JV Purchases Off-Market Multifamily Community in North Houston

11 Apr 2014, 9:03 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

As one of the 10 fastest growing cities in the U.S., Houston continues to attract major investors striving to capitalize on the high demand for multifamily product. Dallas-based Presidium Group LLC is the latest to achieve a purchase, having acquired Live Oak Bend Apartments, a 252-unit multifamily community in North Houston. The purchase was structured as a joint venture with Nessel Development, also of Dallas.

Presidium plans to kick off a major renovation project as part of its strategy to rebrand and reposition the property. Highlights include upgrading of the units’ interior hardware, plumbing, lighting fixtures and appliances, as well as refurbishment of building exteriors, amenities and common areas.

“Live Oak Bend is a well-maintained off-market opportunity that we are purchasing at a significant discount to replacement cost,” said Presidium co-CEO Cross Moceri in a written statement. “The current property’s performance is positive, but also affords the upside potential to significantly increase rental income through value-add renovations.”

Located at 1351 Greens Parkway, the  garden-style community offers a mix of one- and two-bedroom rental apartment homes in a beautifully landscaped neighborhood. Amenities include a swimming pool, tennis court, basketball court, volleyball court, picnic areas with tables and barbecues, fitness center and business center. The Live Oak Bend complex is easily accessible to I-45 and Beltway 8; it is also close to Bush Intercontinental Airport and Northwest Medical Center.

Founded in 2002, Presidium Group is a vertically integrated diversified real estate investment and management firm specializing in opportunistic and value-added transactions throughout the United States. Presidium currently owns and operates more than 7,500 apartment units in Austin, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio and Waco. Its Houston portfolio encompasses more than 3,000 apartment units, according to official statements.

Click here for further Houston market data.

Photo courtesy of Presidium Group



Wood Partners’ Alta Heights Shows Strong Leasing; JV Buys Westchase Office Building

7 Apr 2014, 4:20 am

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Multifamily developer Wood Partners L.L.C. announced that its Alta Heights apartment community in Houston is almost 70 percent occupied. Since the community opened its doors four months ago, it has leased 173 of the 256 available units.

Designed by Womack + Hampton and built by Wood Partners, the luxury multifamily complex sits on 3.5 acres at 145 Heights Blvd., between the historic Heights district and the city’s dynamic Washington Corridor.

The four-story apartment building comprises one- and two-bedroom units. Interiors feature granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, washer/dryers, and garden tubs and showers in select units. Approximately half of the units come with a technology package, including built-in Bluetooth-capable surround sound.

Common amenities include a courtyard with pool, barbecue grills, an outdoor kitchen with TV, a second courtyard with water fountain and grill, a fitness center, a leasing office and a club room with kitchen and bar areas.

Rents range from $1,265 a month for a studio to $2,105 a month for a two-bedroom, according to Wood Partners.

“In addition to offering a quick and easy commute to Downtown, the Medical Center, Greenway Plaza and the Energy Corridor, Alta Heights offers modern, luxurious homes with state-of-the-art amenities,” said Todd Gaines, Wood Partners’ South Texas director. “For residents who want to live in the heart of Houston, Alta Heights is definitely the place to be.”

Meanwhile, Harbert United States Real Estate Fund V L.P., in partnership with Fuller Realty Partners L.L.C., purchased 9801 Westheimer, a 211,125-square foot, 11-story office building .

Built in 1982, 9801 Westheimer is located on a 5.4-acre tract that fronts Westheimer Road in the master-planned Westchase District near the Galleria, one of Houston´s fastest-growing business districts. It was 86 percent occupied at the time of closing, with in-place rental rates below market rates. The new ownership plans to invest additional capital to upgrade and reposition the property.

The acquisition is the fifth joint venture between HUSRE and Fuller, adding to a portfolio of well-located office assets with value-add upside through focused operational management and leasing. According to a statement for the press, Fuller will handle leasing and management for the project.

Photo credit: Alta Heights Houston Luxury Apartments via Official Website



Crescent Communities Launches Phase One of Amenity-Rich Master-Planned Community

31 Mar 2014, 8:25 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Determined to capitalize on current demand, Charlotte-based Crescent Communities has become the latest company to kick off development of a new residential community in northeast Houston.

Crescent has selected six builder partners for phase one of the Groves, a 993-acre, master-planned development. Highland Homes, David Weekley Homes, Darling Homes, Taylor Morrison, Trendmaker Homes and Village Builders will offer the first 189 of an estimated 2,200 homes. Home construction is expected to begin mid-summer, with the first homes available this fall.

“The Groves will offer residents tremendous benefits in location, outdoor spaces and home style varieties that suit their lifestyles,” said Jim Zimmermann, vice president of Crescent Communities’ residential group in Houston. “We’re looking forward to working with our builders on this next stage of development.”

Greater Houston is home to several of the nation’s best-selling master-planned communities. Boasting a job-centric economy and growing demographics, the area is expected to experience further growth while fostering increased strength in the housing market.

Located in Houston’s thriving northeast corridor, off of West Lake Houston Parkway and south of Kingwood, the Groves will showcase three home site sizes in its first phase, with homes beginning at 2,000 square feet. Village Builders and David Weekley Homes will build units up to ranging from 2,000 square feet to 3,300 square feet on 55-by-130-foot lots; Highland Homes and Darling Homes will offer homes from 2,400 square feet to 3,700 square feet on lots that are 60-by-130 feet; and Trendmaker Homes and Taylor Morrison will feature 70-by-130 lots with homes starting at 3,000 square feet. Price points for the homes will range from $250,000 to the low $400,000s, according to Crescent.

The signature community will include plenty of recreational amenities, among them wooded trails, a Welcome Lodge with a multipurpose room, a lounge, an outdoor plaza, a fire pit and a play area. Illustrative of Crescent’s efforts to encourage sustainable, active lifestyles among community residents, the Groves will provide access to 100 acres of open space along a creek, as well as another 90 acres of open space, parks and natural reserves. Additionally, the community will feature a stocked fishing pond with a cabin and fishing dock, as well as an amenity center and Village Center slated for future phases.

The Groves is Crescent’s fifth undertaking in Texas. The prolific real estate company is also overseeing development of Rough Hollow on Austin’s Lake Travis; Belterra in Dripping Springs near Austin; Wildridge in Oak Point near Dallas; and a 500-acre, master-planned community in Leander.

Meanwhile, the Johnson Development Corp. plans to launch a new 1,300-acre master-planned community in Fort Bend this summer, its fifth in Fort Bend County and 13th in the greater Houston area.

The as-yet-unnamed development will eventually comprise 2,700 homes, retail and commercial facilities, public and private schools, churches and environmentally focused recreational amenities.

Owned by the General Land Office for the state of Texas, the property is situated at the intersection of the Grand Parkway and West Airport Boulevard, providing immediate access to Houston’s Energy Corridor, Sugar Land and employment centers in Houston via the Westpark Tollway.

Johnson Development says the first lots will be available to builders in the first quarter of 2015.

Rendering of The Groves in Houston via The Groves official Facebook Page



Development Underway for 128-Key Hotel at Springwoods Village

24 Mar 2014, 4:17 pm

By Amalia Otet, Associate Editor

Woodbine Development Corp. and InterMountain Management (IMM) have commenced development of Residence Inn by Marriott, a 128-key extended-stay hotel in North Houston.

The Residence Inn will be situated on a newly acquired 3.25-acre tract within Springwoods Village, a master-planned, mixed-use community located just south of The Woodlands and 20 miles north of downtown Houston. Currently in the design phase, the premier hotel is scheduled for opening in summer 2015; it is the first of three select-service hotels Woodbine plans to develop in Springwoods Village, including a full-service outfit in the Springwoods Town Center.

Boasting more than 650 all-suites hotels across four continents, the Residence Inn brand features spacious suites specifically designed for longer stays, with separate living and sleeping areas. Amenities include fully equipped kitchens, grocery delivery, complimentary hot breakfast and free Wi-Fi.

The new Residence Inn in Springwoods Village will serve the ExxonMobil campus, Southwestern Energy headquarters and other employers in the area, and will be the third project developed by Woodbine and IMM since the companies joined forces in 2012. The development team also includes GH2 Hospitality Architects of Tulsa, Walter P Moore Engineers of Tulsa, Precision Engineering of Tulsa and DCI Engineers of Austin, according to Citybizlist.

CDC Houston Inc., a subsidiary of Coventry Development Corp. of New York, oversees land development for Springwoods Village, as previously reported by Commercial Property Executive. Situated along the west side of Interstate 45 between Springwoods Village Parkway and the future Grand Parkway, the $10 billion, 1,800-acre community will provide diverse housing options, civic facilities, outdoor recreation and a 60-acre town center (pictured at right) with office space, shopping, dining and lodging in an urban, walkable environment.

“With several planned hotels, Springwoods Village will help stimulate a new hotel submarket to accommodate the needs of the rapidly expanding employment center in north Harris County,” said Keith Simon, executive vice president of CDC Houston, in a written statement. “The development of Residence Inn is the first step in our strategy to provide a range of hotel products at different price points within walking distance of work centers.”

Rendering of Springwoods Town Center via the Springwoods Village official website.







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