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24-Story ‘SkyHouse’ to be Built in Houston’s Central Business District

Press Release | March 12, 2013
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Denver-based Simpson Housing, LLLP, Novare Group, Batson-Cook Development Co. and Houston-based developer Peter W. Dienna have closed on land and financing and issued a notice to proceed on a 24-story, 336-home luxury high-rise apartment community on a full city block at 1625 Main Street in the Central Business District of Houston, Texas.

SkyHouse Houston is the fifth SkyHouse® project by Novare Group, Batson-Cook Development, architecture firm Smallwood Reynolds, Stewart, Stewart and Batson-Cook Construction and follows projects in Atlanta, Orlando, Fla. and Austin, Texas. Simpson Housing is a partner in the Austin project.

SkyHouse Houston

SkyHouse Houston will be the fifth SkyHouse. The others are in Austin, Orlando and two in Atlanta.

JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A. is providing construction financing for the project, and Simpson Housing, NGI Investments, LLC, led by Jim Borders, and Batson-Cook Development Company are providing equity. The CBRE team of Robert LaChappelle, Jonathan Rice and Paul Berry arranged financing. David Cook and Jeff Peden of Cushman & Wakefield brokered the land.

“We are very bullish on our second SkyHouse project in Texas with Novare and Batson-Cook Development, and the TIRZ tax abatement was a significant factor in our underwriting,” said Scott Henley, Senior Vice President of Simpson Housing. “We have made a significant push into the
Houston market and are pleased to be executing on a downtown development with this outstanding
team.”

The new construction is expected to create 500 construction jobs and draw more than 400 residents to the Central Business District. The City of Houston awarded SkyHouse Houston a tax abatement of $15,000 per apartment unit, subsidizing the more expensive high rise construction costs necessary on the small city blocks and representing a substantial incentive to drive new development in a submarket that has lagged an otherwise robust Houston apartment market.

”Our team is very pleased to be working with Houston Mayor Annise Parker, Bob Eury of the Houston Downtown District, and our partner Pete Dienna to bring the SkyHouse vision to Houston,” said Jim Borders, President, Novare Group. “Our mission with SkyHouse is to find places in dynamic cities
where 25 to 34-year-old singles can, with our developments, experience a great high-rise living experience that fits within their budget. We are impressed with all that downtown has to offer SkyHouse residents, and we are very proud to have a shovel in the ground in Houston.”

SkyHouse Houston will feature floor-to-ceiling glass and nine-foot plus ceiling heights with high-end finishes, including stainless steel appliances, granite counter tops, wood floors, expansive balconies, and high speed wiring. The project will have a “Sky House” on the top floor, including a club room, fitness center, pool, and grilling area, with unimpeded views of much of Houston. The building will be ENERGY Star rated.

“Houston is one of the strongest markets in the United States and is underserved in terms of new apartment product, particularly in the downtown area.” said Mark Stewart, Director of Investments, Batson-Cook Development Company. “SkyHouse Houston is unlike anything else being delivered right now with high rise views, high end finishes and a world-class amenity deck, all specifically targeted to the next generation professional work force. SkyHouse will be an asset that Houston will be proud of.”

SkyHouse Houston will be within walking distance of more than 40 million square feet of office space, the Toyota Center, Minute Maid Park and BBVA Compass Stadium. The project will be steps from the Bell Station Metrorail stop, providing residents with excellent access via public transportation to the surrounding areas including a short ride to the Texas Medical Center, the largest medical center in the world and a large economic driver within the Houston metro.

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Category: Houston

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