Tag Archives: Multi-family

Part 6-Leavenworth Street Makes a Comeback

L 14 Flats, located on the corner of 14th and Leavenworth.  Image courtesy of http://www.facebook.com/pages/L14-Flats-Apartment-Homes

L 14 Flats, located on the corner of 14th and Leavenworth. Image courtesy of http://www.facebook.com/pages/L14-Flats-Apartment-Homes

Leavenworth Street had never been very sexy. The eclectic mix of aging warehouses, dormant thrift shops, vacant storefronts, and well, its prison, created an environment in which the name conjured up an image of a boundary line. It had seemingly, for many years, served as a border between a thriving urban core and a once bustling urban neighborhood. Little by little, though, this perception changed. Over the past decade, projects such as the Rows and Soma, the Drake Court, the Baker Supply Building, laid the foundation for Leavenworth Street’s new reputation: the a unique urban neighborhood minutes from the Old Market. Announced in the Summer of 2011 and recently completed, the L 14 Flats have become another welcome addition to the now trendy address in downtown Omaha.

The property, which contains 42 apartment units featuring various layouts, rests on the site of a former taxicab dispatch center. With features such as garage parking, an outdoor courtyard, and the obvious ability to live just a few steps away from the cultural center of the entire state of Nebraska, the building serves as yet another example of a successful urban living project in downtown Omaha.

More importantly, the project helped usher in a new vision for downtown. For too long, the focus of downtown living has been centered around the Old Market. This redevelopment into Market West, as the area is now know, shows that all parts of downtown (not just one or two) can create their own distinct culture and vibe. Additionally, America First Real Estate Group’s ability to lease out the property with relative ease shows that downtown market continues to absorb new multifamily construction and is likely capable of more investment.

Although no new projects have currently been announced along Leavenworth Street, one cannot help but imagine the endless possibilities that the street has to offer. The one time border between the thriving and the disenfranchised is now becoming an epicenter of downtown living.

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Part 5-NuStyle Development Asks Why.

The 16-Story 2223 Dodge Building now known as the Highline

The 16-Story 2223 Dodge Building now known as the Highline

It is about to usher in an entirely new era in downtown Omaha.  Although it has been a craze in major metropolitan areas throughout the United States, Omaha, for years, has lacked a true, urban, trendy, highrise apartment building.  Sure, there are buildings like the Opheum Tower, Riverfront Place, and others who boast the amenities of highrise living, but few will be able to match the dream that is about to become reality thanks to NuStyle Development Corp.

Acquired in July of 2012 by NuStyle for the price of $2.3 million, 2223 Dodge Street has been a long vacant eyesore in the heart of downtown Omaha.  Strategically located between booming Midtown and the bustling urban core of downtown Omaha, the building has sat dormant and unoccupied since 2002.

Ironically, the new towering testament to the strength of downtown, the building once served as the headquarters of American’s symbol of corporate greed and dishonesty.

Enron Corp, formed through Omaha based Northern Natural Gas’ acquisition of Huston Natural Gas, Interon, as it was initially named, called the building home for many years.  In hindsight, it may have been a sign of things to come. After promising to keep their corporate headquarters in Omaha, CEO Kenneth Lay moved the company, almost overnight, to the city of Houston.  In the years after their departure, the building changed hands multiple times.  Although it was updated many times throughout the 1990s, its last tenants vacated in 2002.  Omaha’s third largest structure (at the time) was now vacant.  In 2001, it appraised for a stunning $11.8 Million.

Despite its tumultuous past, NuStyle saw an opportunity for growth.  After realizing the success of their most recent project, the Bank, which converted the former Farm Credit Building at 19th and Douglas into apartments, it was clear that the site, located just blocks from the Joslyn Art Museum, Central High School and Creighton University, was ripe with potential.  Soon, the $30 million conversion project will boast 180 to 200 apartment units with amenities such as a rooftop patio, theater, a state-of-the-art fitness center, and breathtaking 360-degree views of downtown Omaha that will be a sight to behold.

Thanks to the investment by NuStyle, this once prominent address will become the Highline, one of the most sought after residential addresses in downtown Omaha.

For more information visit: http://www.thehighlineomaha.com/

Source: The Omaha World-Hearld

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Part 3-New Life for the Historic Barker Building

A post card circa 1929 of this Historic Barker Building at 15th and Farnam

It’s been almost 15 years since the Barker Building was boarded up.  This Neo-Gothic Revival beauty, built by Omaha construction tycoon Peter Kiewit and Sons in 1929, the Barker Building is an important piece of Omaha’s architectural history.  Since 2008, this property located at 15th and Farnam has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places.   Yet for so many years, this iconic gem has been relegated to a simple eyesore.  Thanks to the unprecedented momentum currently shaping the downtown landscape and, of course, a partnership between Omaha based Shamrock Development and Dicon Construction, that is starting to change.

This May, the development team announced their intentions to renovate this piece of history into a vibrant mix of 48 luxury apartments and over 6,000 square feet of street level retail.  With apartment rents ranging from $900 to $1,200 per month, this once dormant property will be given a breath of fresh air.  Pickleman’s Gormet Cafe has already announced plans to open a sandwich shop at street level.  With an estimated project price tag of roughly $9 million, this redevelopment will mark a continuation efforts by developers and city leaders to bring new life to Omaha’s historic addresses.

For the past several years, this activity has seemed to be centered around the Old Market and North Downtown neighborhoods.  This project will help “bridge the gap” between Downtown Omaha’s thriving entertainment and nightlife and the corporate core of downtown, currently centered around 16th and Douglas.

Most significantly worth noting is that this project will meet the demand of a market segment mostly overlooked by the downtown construction boom of the early 2000′s: market rate luxury apartments.  Past projects of note, such as the Paxton, the Ford Warehouse, and Beebe and Runyan Lofts, tended to focus on the luxury condominium market.  This project shows confidence in the downtown rental apartment market and which appears to be gaining momentum across downtown.  This redevelopment is one of several currently planned and announced apartment projects in downtown.

With construction underway, it will be interesting to see how this project will shape the immediately surrounding blocks.  Several underutilized properties surround the building to the West.  In particular, they tend to concentrate around the 16th Street and Farman intersection.  With new residents and retail establishments set to move in to the Barker, it will be exciting to watch the surrounding blocks feed off of its rebirth.  Upon completion, the Barker Building will again become an important piece of Omaha’s downtown landscape, and will once again be a hub of activity for years to come.

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