By Dees Stribling, Contributing Editor
Glendale, Calif.–American Post Development L.L.C. has formed a joint venture with a BlackRock-managed fund to develop the 208-unit Broadway Lofts, a multifamily project in Glendale’s entertainment district. The project, which will be on an 0.83-acre former Circuit City site, closed escrow just before the end of 2010 and is slated for completion in about two years.
Broadway Lofts will be a LEED Silver apartment complex consisting of a five-story structure over ground-floor retail, serviced by three levels of subterranean parking. “I don’t know that people will pay a rent premium to be in a LEED-certified building, but it will help attract potential residents,” Jack Ehrman, principal at Post Investment Group L.L.C, tells MHN. “People are now aware of what that means.”
American Post Development is itself a partnership between Los Angeles-based Post Investment Group and Huntington Beach-based AMF Development L.L.C. According to the partners, the property will be the first Class A multifamily asset in this part of Glendale since the 2008 completion of units at the Americana at Brand, a mixed-use property that includes 475,000 square feet of retail as well as 238 rental apartments and 100 condominiums.
Broadway Lofts’ target market is young urban professionals, a demographic that the developers assert has been largely underserved in the area and will be a primary driver of market-rate tenancy. Among other amenities, the property includes a rooftop terrace, two spas, a fire pit and an outdoor kitchen, all complemented by unobstructed views of downtown Los Angeles six miles to the south.
Investors looking for multifamily properties have been sniffing around Glendale lately, impressed by its demographics. Employment within the area is predominantly composed of entertainment, retail, insurance and finance-related businesses, and according to the U.S. Census Bureau the city has an average household income of just over $57,000. Occupancy rates for both apartments and retail establishments in the area, say the developers, exceed 95 percent.
Earlier this month, a Glendale apartment complex was bought out of receivership by Essex Property Trust Inc. for $43 million. The developer, Newport Beach-based East Broadway Ventures, had intended the project to be condos, but the Great Recession put the kibosh on those plans, and the property became rental apartments, which are now about 95 percent occupied.