Allen Morris Residential Closes on its First Residential Land Deal in St. Petersburg
Coral Gables-based developer identifies strong housing demand in Downtown St. Petersburg, one of Florida’s fastest-growing communities
ST. PETERSBURG – April 15, 2014 – With 56 years of success in commercial development, The Allen Morris Company launches into multi-family residential development with The Hermitage Apartment Homes in St. Petersburg, Florida. Allen Morris Residential announced today that it closed on the purchase of two acres of undeveloped land for $5.25 million in cash, before transaction expenses. In response to the strong demand for multifamily units in downtown St. Petersburg, Allen Morris plans to construct 348 rental apartments on the land, which lies close to the city’s burgeoning medical and university campuses, hip retail shops, eclectic art galleries and established museums. This will be the company’s 80th development project.
The Hermitage takes into consideration the desires and characteristics of the new generation of urban dwelling Millenials and empty nesters. Included in Forbes list of Best Cities for Young Professionals, the Tampa Bay area continues to attract more residents due to the location’s reasonable cost of living, exciting nightlife and favorable business climate.
“St. Pete’s population was once dominated by retirees, but the average age is trending younger,” said W. Allen Morris, chairman and CEO of the development company. “The area’s employment growth rate for young professionals is now the highest in Florida, and we are excited to be investing in the city’s future.”
The Hermitage will occupy a full city block in downtown St. Petersburg. Construction on the eight-story building located at 700 First Avenue South will begin in July, with spacious studio, one-, and two-bedroom units scheduled for occupancy at the end of 2015. Acknowledging its proximity to the 37-mile Pinellas bike/jog trail that connects to nearby parks and beaches, one of the project’s special amenities is a bicycle-oriented storage and a service center. The Hermitage, named after the famous art museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, will focus largely on the arts, as demonstrated by the gallery that will be in the lobby. The building will also feature art throughout the building.
The amenities in The Hermitage Apartment Homes will make it feel more like a luxury resort, with a beautiful rooftop pool and spa, fitness center, outdoor grilling area, a demonstration kitchen and a private dining/meeting room filled with art overlooking the bay.
The area’s demographics take into account students and staff from the nearby University of South Florida campus, and doctors and medical professionals from All Children’s Hospital Johns Hopkins Medicine, which is just four blocks away. Also expected to move in are commuters who work across the bay in Tampa, but want the lifestyle of Downtown St. Pete.
ABOUT ALLEN MORRIS RESIDENTIAL
Following 56 years of success in South Florida’s commercial and industrial real estate markets, The Allen Morris Company launched its residential division late last year. The leadership team at Allen Morris Residential is well qualified to respond to the increased demand for residential projects in Florida and the Southeast U.S. Its experienced executives include Chairman and CEO W. Allen Morris, who has led The Allen Morris Company, one of the largest developers and managers of office buildings in the State of Florida; Managing Director Dennis Suarez, with more than 30 years’ experience in the field; Gordon Crozier, Director of Investments, who previously directed financial operations for Atlantic Gulf Communities and Beazer Homes among other high level financial positions with both publically traded and private companies; and Kevin Blakey, Director of Construction and a Licensed General Contractor with experience building multifamily rentals, high-rise condominiums and commercial.