Denver Opportunity Zone Attracts Cresset-Diversified Fund, Hines

Starting in early 2020, the partners will build North Wynkoop, a 10-story, 392-unit luxury community in Denver’s RiNo neighborhood.
Denver skyline. Image by docoverachiever

Cresset-Diversified QOZ Fund and Hines are teaming up on a second Qualified Opportunity Zone development by announcing plans to build a 10-story, 392-unit luxury multifamily community in Denver’s River North (RiNo) neighborhood. Construction on North Wynkoop will begin in the first quarter of 2020.

The residences, to be located on the northern edge of RiNo, will be part of a larger master redevelopment plan that will include a boutique hotel, office building, retail and a 4,000-seat AEG Live event center, which will open in August. RiNo is one of Denver’s prime cultural, dining and nightlife destinations. It is located in close proximity to both the city’s light rail system and major thoroughfares.

The Cresset-Diversified QOZ Fund is a $500 million fund focused on investing in QOZs. Passed as part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Acts of 2017, QOZs are land tracts in areas designated by the U.S. Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service.  Investors who develop projects in QOZs are eligible for the sizable tax breaks for those who make long-term investments in areas where they have the potential to promote economic growth. Cresset Partners and Diversified Real Estate Capital launched the fund in the fall of 2018. The fund, led by executive team members Eric Becker, Avy Stein, Larry Levy, Jeffrey Cherner and Michael Miller, is seeking to create institutional quality assets focused on office, retail, multifamily, industrial, residential and mixed-use properties that are located in QOZs.

The Preston in Houston

Stein, co-founder of Cresset, said they believe the RiNo project is a good choice for their second QOZ development with Hines because it will be a top-quality real estate property in Denver, one of the fastest growing urban areas in the U.S. This will be the second project for the fund to be developed with Hines. In February, Hines and the fund unveiled The Preston, a 46-story luxury rental tower in downtown Houston that will have 373 units. Built on the site of the former Houston Chronicle parking garage, the location is at the corner of Preston and Milam Streets at the convergence of the city’s Central Business District, Theatre and Historic districts. It is also near 800 Texas Ave., where Hines and Ivanhoe Cambridge are building a 47-story, 1 million-square-foot office tower, where Hines is expected to move its headquarters upon completion in 2021.

Construction on The Preston was scheduled to start in March and be completed by the third quarter of 2022, with preleasing beginning in October 2021.