Originally built in 1951, The Garage was formerly an automobile dealership and parking structure, known as Stephen’s Garage. New Orleans-based Wisznia Architecture + Development redeveloped it into a $52 million mixed-use property with 51 multifamily apartments, 11 penthouse units, and 20,940 square feet of ground floor retail. The property is LEED certified and has two car elevators that allow residents to park in front of their respective units.
Wisznia is the architect, developer, and property manager of The Garage. Completed in December 2019, the multifamily portion of the property is currently undergoing lease-up and had reached 60 percent occupancy at the time of funding.
Led by Stephen Farnsworth and Paul Garner, the Walker & Dunlop team worked diligently to structure non-recourse financing through Bridge Investment Group. The project involved State and Federal Historic Tax Credits, a restoration tax abatement, and a mixed-use transitional lease-up.
“We are extremely pleased with the outcome of this highly complex project,” commented Marcel Wisznia, President of Wisznia Architecture + Development. “Stephen and Paul, from the Walker & Dunlop team, worked tirelessly to secure a bridge loan that met our many and varied needs. They also coordinated amongst several parties to ensure that each of the tax credit requirements for The Garage were met.” He continued, “Our experience with the W&D team exceeded our expectations, and we look forward to working with them on our newest construction project that will provide workforce housing in New Orleans.”
Walker & Dunlop has one of the strongest networks in the industry, with over 250 capital sources. The firm completed $5.9 billion in brokered loan originations from January through September 2020. Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Walker & Dunlop is a publicly traded real estate finance company that maintains a significant office presence in New Orleans.