Last week HRI Properties closed on a $100 million financing package for the redevelopment of 225 Baronne St. The 30-story downtown office building is being converted into apartments and an Aloft boutique hotel.
HRI vice president of development Josh Collen stated that the project is being financed through a combination of federal and state historic tax credits, federal New Markets tax credits, premium tax credits from the Louisiana New Markets Jobs Act.
According to Orleans Parish conveyance records, 225 Baronne and neighboring 919 Gravier were purchased in May in separate transactions for $1.5 million each. Collen said interior demolition of 225 Baronne St. began last month, and demolition of 919 Gravier to make way for a garage entrance ramp should begin in the next two weeks. Both demolition projects should be done by the end of the year. The project has a 14-month construction schedule and should be complete by December 2014, with occupancy beginning in January 2015.
The 550,000-square-foot office building was built in 1962 and is being converted into 192 residential apartments and a 188-room Aloft Hotel, part of Starwood Hotel chain. The bottom 10 floors of the building will be converted into a 356-space public parking garage. A $52 million building permit for the first half of the project was filed in August.
HCI Architecture, the in-house design affiliate of HRI, is serving as the architect of record for the project and Roy Anderson Corp. is the general contractor.
The apartment portion will include 124 one-bedroom apartments, 63 two-bedroom units and five rooftop penthouses with private balconies. Apartment sizes will range from 715 to 1,850 square feet. The building will also feature a rooftop pool and fitness center, along with a separate pool for the hotel.
Financing was provided by Capital One Bank, Whitney Bank, First Bank and Trust, U.S. Bancorp Community Development Corp., Stonehenge Capital Co., the National Trust Community Investment Corporation, and National Cities Fund.
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