City/State: Alexandria, Virginia
In 2015, EDENS, an experienced retail operator, approached Clarion Partners and Gables Residential to develop a mixed-use asset and operate the multifamily portion on an entitled site in the highly desirable suburb of Alexandria, VA in the Washington, DC metro area. Old Town Alexandria is quite walkable, and includes waterfront parks, shops, and trendy restaurants. Alexandria's Old Town North neighborhood, in particular, is widely recognized for its historic charm, waterfront access, and cultural significance.
The site's premium location was a key consideration. Two desirable grocery stores are located within blocks of the property site, as are two metro lines which provide connectivity to the entire Washington, D.C. region. Additionally, the neighborhood's historic status and lack of land parcels available for development result in limited potential for new multifamily competition in the immediate area, providing a favorable environment for long-term growth prospects. Recognizing the unique opportunity, Clarion Partners and Gables Residential decided to pursue the property development project.
The resulting property, Gables Old Town North, is a 232-unit apartment community completed in 2019 and stabilized in 2020. First move-ins occurred in April 2019 and strong velocity resulted in stabilization (93% occupied) by 3Q 2020, despite the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
During the planning and development of the project, the team focused on implementing a number of green building and efficiency features, such as EV charging stations, secure bike storage, high-efficiency plumbing, HVAC systems and hot water heaters, and high-performance low-e glass windows, resulting in LEED for Homes Silver certification*. The community also earned Fitwel One-Star certification for its demonstrated commitment to the health and wellness of its tenants**.
Units range from 550 sq. ft. studios to 1,580 sq. ft. two-bedroom townhouse units, averaging 866 sq. ft./unit. The units include stainless steel appliances, granite countertops, under-mount sinks, tile backsplashes, under-cabinet lighting, hardwood flooring in kitchens and living rooms.
The community also provides residents with top-tier amenities including two landscaped terraces, a large landscaped courtyard, state-of-the-art fitness center, business center, community room, barbecue grills, roof deck with views of the Potomac River, and a pool - an amenity which few comparable communities in the submarket offer.
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