Apartments in Lafayette sold for $36.1 million

LAFAYETTE — The appetite for multifamily developments remains strong, with the Prana apartments in Lafayette going for $36.1 million being the latest deal.

Prana is a 264-unit complex in the “SoLa,” or south Lafayette, area, off U.S. Highway 287 just north of Exempla Good Samaritan Medical Center.

Property records list the buyer as LLJ Stratford Prana LLC. Ken Kiken, principal of Milestone Development Group, which built Prana, said the purchase was the first acquisition of apartment investors looking to move into Colorado.

According to its registration with the Secretary of State’s office, LLJ Stratford Prana is based in San Diego.

Milestone Development Group, an apartment developer, builder and manager based in Denver, opened Prana in 2010.

Milestone’s strategy is to build new AAA-quality apartments, lease the units into the 94 percent to 97 percent occupancy range, and then sell, said Kiken. The company typically tries to sell complexes three years after their construction.

“We just leased it up in about nine-and-a-half months, got it to 97 percent, and we sold it,” Kiken said.

Real-estate investment trusts, pension funds and insurance companies are the types of investors most eager to buy, Kiken said. Five potential buyers considered Prana.

Milestone is in the process of obtaining construction permits for the Prasana apartments, a 240-unit community that borders Prana on the east, Kiken said. The apartments are in Lafayette’s SoLa development, an approximately 50-acre area that will include retail, restaurant and office space.

Doug Andrews and Jeffrey Hawks, principals of the Denver office of Apartment Realty Advisors, represented Milestone, Kiken said.

BOULDER

ELEMENT BUYS 26 UNITS: A group of investors led by Scott Holton and Chris Jacobs of Element Properties recently purchased the 26-unit apartment building at 2037 Walnut St. in a $4 million deal.

The new owners intend to remodel the 31-year-old building next year to update its exterior appearance and make it more energy efficient, Holton said.

Jacobs represented the new owners in the transaction. The Terry L. McDaniel Profit Sharing Plan sold the property and represented itself, Holton said.

Element Properties, which is based in Boulder, will manage the building. The company recently hired Eric Mallon to be its new director of property management.

Element Properties and its fellow investors have been active buying and selling properties in the past few months. In October, they bought the property at 1707 Walnut St. for $2.87 million and plan to build 20 luxury apartments and 8,000 square feet of ground floor retail space on the site. They plan to deliver that building in 2014.

ZAYO GROUP EXPANDS: Zayo Group LLC, a Louisville-based company that is one of the fastest-growing telecoms in the country, will be opening a new office in Boulder.

The additional office of a yet-to-be disclosed location and size will be an expansion, Scott Reardon, vice president of corporate development and investor relations, wrote in an email.

“We will maintain our Louisville and Denver Tech Center offices, but are excited to add the Boulder office in order to accommodate the growth of the business and Zayo Boulder employees — and move closer to the heart of Boulder’s active business community,” Reardon said.

Founded in 2007, Zayo has aggressively bought other telecom companies, including AboveNet Inc. (NYSE: ABVT), which Zayo acquired this summer for $2.2 billion. Zayo has completed 22 acquisitions, and its network now is 67,000 route miles with a total of 4.7 million miles of fiber and 10,000 buildings on net.

SMITH WINS CALLAN AWARD: Commercial Brokers of Boulder has picked Scot Smith of The Colorado Group to be the winner of the inaugural Dean Callan Recognition Award. The award, named for the late founder of Dean Callan & Co., recognizes quality of service to clients, integrity, leadership and community involvement. A $2,500 donation to Boulder Community Hospital was made in Smith’s name.

LEASES SIGNED

• Grouphigh LLC, a software development company that develops tools businesses can use to manage outreach to bloggers, has signed a lease for 1,347 square feet at 1898 S. Flatiron Court. Dryden Dunsmore, Becky Callan Gamble and Hunter Barto of Dean Callan & Co. and Scott Garel of Newmark Knight Frank Frederick Ross, represented Goff Capital Partners, the owners.

• MMA Design LLC, a small engineering firm that specializes in spaceflight systems, is leasing 10,027 square feet at Flatrion Park West. Hunter Barto of Dean Callan & Co. and Scott Garel of Newmark Knight Frank Frederick Ross represented the landlord, Washington Capital. Mark Casey of Tenant Wisdom represented the tenant.

LONGMONT

ANCHOR UNDER CONTRACT: The owner of Twin Peaks Mall might have found its anchor.

A big-box general retail store could anchor the northeast corner of Twin Peaks Mall in Longmont as part of the mall’s redevelopment, a representative of mall owner NewMark Merrill Mountain States has told the Longmont City Council.

The stand-alone store would occupy 100,000 square feet of space. Fort Collins-based NewMark Merrill is not disclosing the retailer’s name, citing contractual arrangements.

Allen Ginsborg, the company’s managing director and principal, told the City Council on Dec. 11 that the retailer is under contract.

Another NewMark Merrill representative, leasing associate Ross Carpenter, said the company is talking with natural grocery retailers, local breweries and restaurants about becoming tenants at Twin Peaks’ new “retail village.”

NewMark Merrill hopes to break ground on the $80 million “retail village” project at the Twin Peaks Mall site in 2013, Ginsborg said. A design plan shows Twin Peaks becoming a four-building project built around a central promenade and fountain. A new movie theater is planned. Dillard’s, which owns and operates its store, will be converted into a free-standing store.

The city may help the mall redevelopment through tax-increment financing. The City Council in August gave initial approval to a plan to create a metro district at the Twin Peaks Mall site to have the authority to sell about $25 million in bonds to make infrastructure improvements.

NewMark Merrill Mountain States bought the 555,000-square-foot mall at 1250 S. Hover St. in February for $8.5 million.

LEASE SIGNED

• Backpack and outdoor gear maker Deuter USA is moving its headquarters in Longmont to 1200 S. Fordham St., which is at the Campus at Longmont. The space is 17,107 square feet. It was represented by Dustin Whistler of Forte Commercial. The landlord, Goff Capital Parters, was represented by Becky Callan Gamble, Dryden Dunsmore and Hunter Barto of Dean Callan & Co. and Scott Garel of Newmark Knight Frank Frederick Ross.

Michael Davidson can be reached at 303-630-1943 or mdavidson@bcbr.com. Beth Potter contributed to this report.

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